Oil on panel
8 1/4 x 6 3/8 inches (21 x 16 cm)
Framed: 14 x 12 inches (35.6 x 30.5 cm.)
Signed: JF Spohler
Private collection, USA
His father, Jan Jacob Spohler, died when Johannes Franciscus was only thirteen years old, so, unlike his much older brother Jan Jacob Coenraad, he most likely never had lessons from him. This absence of a paternal painting influence is possibly why Johannes Franciscus chose a genre different from that of his father and brother. He concentrated on painting historicist city and village scenes filled with figures, as opposed to the summer landscapes and winter scenes favored by his family members. His oeuvre was inspired by that of the grand master in the field, Cornelis Springer, with his depictions of narrow streets of Old-Dutch houses, populated with all kinds of people busily engaged in all kinds of activity. Spohler’s work is represented in various leading museums.
The Town Hall, The Hague by Spohler is an exquisite example of his oeuvre. Spohler depicts in this painting, the city square bustling with life as people go about their daily routines. On the left is the Town Hall among other buildings and the details of the buildings are depicted in painstaking detail. This is a painting of marvelous clarity and craftsmanship. Spohler’s attention to detail and careful brushstroke make this make this a truly wonderful piece.