Lot 63
Indonesian Art Sale | 18 November 2020
Raden Basoeki Abdullah (1915-1993)

The coronation ceremony of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands

signed 'B. Abdullah' (lower right)

oil on canvas, unframed, 199x299 cm

Literature: -Frans Leidelmeijer, Chris Vellinga 'Basoeki Abdullah in Den Haag', p. 44 and 45.

Juliana was sworn-in and inaugurated on 6 September 1948 as monarch during a joint session of the States General of the Netherlands at a ceremony held in the Nieuwe Kerk in Amsterdam, becoming the 12th member of the House of Orange to rule the Netherlands.

Charles Eyck, a painter from the Dutch province of Limburg, was officially commissioned by the State and he painted a portrait on a 3x2 metre canvas. In June 1949, the Minister of Education, Art and Science went to look at the finished work in the Municipal Museum in The Hague and he liked it. But the critics were less enthusiastic. The canvas tha can be seen on the photographs in the newspapers, was very disappointing and suffered a lot of criticism. Prince Bernard's stiff arm, the badly finished off details, the vague secondary characters who are hard to make out-no, this paining was a mistake. Done far too quickly, Eyck was far too easily satisfied, and the State that approved of this work didn't know what they were doing. Charles Eyck was very angry about this criticism. He wrote an announcement that was printed in several newspapers: 'As it isn't customary for painters to object to criticism directed at them, I hereby offer 4.000 Guilders to any Dutch painter who can produce a better 'inauguration painting' than the one I did [....] and that is now on display. [...] The afore-mentioned amount is 1.000 Guilders more than the amount that I received. The painting produced has to meet the same conditions that I was set. The size has to be 3x2 metres. The painting has to be delivered by 30th December, 1949; this is the same amount of time that I needed for my painting. [...] The prospectus with the General Terms & Conditions are available from me. Charles Eyck'.

He didn't aks for the prospectus, but Basoeki took up the challenge and in no time he had an enormous canvas ready for display. He exhibited it in Scheveningen. It appeared in the newsletters and it was indeed quite a bit more convincing. Basoeki never received his 4.000 Guilders, because after he had got over his anger, Eyck made an excuse and retracted his offer.

€ 2.000,00
€ 3.000,00
€ 10.000,00

Hamerprijs: € 10.000