The most expensive of a trio of Old Master pen and wash drawings inscribed Hans Bol offered by Ivoire Chartres was this view dated 1587 of a monastery building which realised €110,000 (£95,650).

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A small group of around 20 Old Master drawings discovered by chance in a house in the Ile de France caused a flurry of excitement among bidders when they appeared at Ivoire Chartres (22% buyer’s premium) on September 23.

Some were dated to the 19th century and all carried modest guides, the majority in the three-figure bracket. However, around half-a-dozen lots of Dutch or Flemish origin were thought to be earlier in date and they were the main object of keen attention.


Skating scene also inscribed Hans Bol and dated 1589 which sold for €90,000 (£78,260) at Ivoire Chartres.

Three of these: a 6½ x 9¼in (16.5 x 23.5cm) pen and wash view of a monastery in a landscape; a 5¾ x 8½in (14.5 x 21.5cm) pen and wash skating scene and a 7½ x 11½in (19.5 x 29cm) pen and wash village scene, were each inscribed Hans Bol with the first also dated 1587 and the second 1589.

However, they were catalogued more cautiously as Dutch school c.1700; Dutch school 17th century, follower of Hendrick Avercamp and Flemish school 17th century, follower of David Vinckbooms respectively.

The monastery scene was taken to €110,000 (£95,650) against a guide of €1500-2000; the skating scene to €90,000 (£78,260) against an estimate of €800-1200 and the village view to €55,000 (£47,825) against the same guide.


Village view inscribed Hans Bol, €55,000 (£47,825) at Ivoire Chartres.

The auction house commented that after the sale the auction expert for these lots, René Millet, said the three Hans Bol signatures were each different but he was of the opinion it was very likely that the drawing which made €110,000 was indeed by Bol. However, the others would require further attribution work.

Hans Bol (1534-93) was a Flemish painter, draughtsman, printmaker and miniaturist with an extensive graphic oeuvre.


A pen, wash and red chalk drawing of an audience scene, €65,000 (£56,520) at Ivoire Chartres.

A fourth high-flyer in the auction was a 5½ x 8in (14 x 20cm) pen, ink and wash and red chalk audience scene featuring a large number of figures and described as Dutch school c.1800. This was hammered down at €65,000 (£56,520), a multiple of the €150-200 guide.

These all ended up going to French buyers but with strong competition from European, notably Dutch, underbidders.

Casteleyn portraits

Two other works that went to four-figure prices were both 9 x 7½in (23 x 19cm) dated chalk portraits of a seated man and woman by the 17th century Dutch artist Jasper Casteleyn (1625-61).

The portrait of the woman was dated upper right Aetatis suae / 20 / 1646; that of the man signed lower left …telyn and dated upper right 1646 and both had labels on the back reading J. Kasteleyn.

Each was estimated at €200-300 but they ended up selling for €3200 (£2780) and €5800 (£5045) respectively.