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Kik Zeiler (b. 1948)

Lot 82: De Herenclub, De Staalmeesters of De Boerderij

Adams Amsterdam Auctions

December 2, 2019
Amsterdam, Netherlands

More About this Item


Description

- HERENCLUB - ZEILER, Kik (Dutch 1948). De Herenclub [The Gentlemen club], 1984/1985. Oil on canvas, signed with initials and dated 'KZ '84/'85' (lower right in the image); framed. Several small brown spots, superficial white trace centre right, else in very good condition.

Dimensions

Image size 134 x 174 cm., frame size 162 x 202 cm.

Artist or Maker

ZEILER, Kik (Dutch 1948).

Exhibited

Portrettengalerij Literatuurmuseum, The Hague, on loan; 'De Onderkant van het Tapijt', Letterkundig Museum, The Hague, 1993; Amstel Hotel, Amsterdam, 1990

Provenance

Estate of Martin Veltman; acquired directly from the artist, 1985

Notes

After many years in the Literatuurmuseum the famous Herenclub by Kik Zeiler is now for sale. Martin Veltman, who commissioned the group portrait in 1985, loaned the group portrait for the Mulisch retrospective in the former Letterkundig Museum (1992). The museum, which considered it the absolute showpiece of the exhibition, was then allowed to include the portrait in the National Writers Gallery. The painting hung there until this auction.
From 1977 the Dutch writer Harry Mulisch headed a group of colleagues, artists, politicians and other prominent gentlemen now known as the Herenclub. They met on Monday for a meal and a good conversation. Tradition has it that every subject was allowed 'except cars, football and women'. Admission to the club was only at the invitation of Harry Mulisch and, according to very temporary member Max Pam, staying away was not appreciated. Pam reported in De Herenclub, a satirical novel about Horus Mimir cum suis. The resemblance to existing persons or events is not entirely based on coincidence.
Over time the composition of the group changed. In the detailed painting by Kik Zeiler we see, from left to right, Wim Duisenberg (politician), Hans van Mierlo (co-founder of the Democrats 66 and Minister of Foreign Affairs), Henk Hofland (journalist), Martin Veltman (copywriter), Harry Mulisch (writer), Gerrit Komrij (writer), Marcel van Dam (chairman of the VARA), Jeroen Henneman (artist), Peter Schat (composer), Han Lammers (journalist and politician), Reinbert de Leeuw (composer, conductor and pianist), André Spoor (editor-in-chief of NRC Handelsblad), Hans Gruijters (co-founder of D’66, mayor) and in absentia journalist W.L. (Boebie) Brugsma and writer Cees Nooteboom (wittily depicted on a copy of De Haagse Post and on a postal stamp on the table). In the second portrait, painted to nature by Marike Bok, the company consists of Jan Posch (notary), Julius Roos (internist), Adriaan van Dis (writer), Coen Stork (diplomat), Brugsma, Komrij, Spoor, Gerard (G.L.) van Lennep (columnist and agent), Henneman, Van Dam, Mulisch, Veltman, Nooteboom, Van Mierlo, Hofland en De Leeuw.
From 1990, Le Garage van Joop Braakhekke became the permanent site for the meetings, but Zeiler’s gentlemen still ate at De Boerderij. Tasty, as we may assume, because until the closure in 1985 a very young Jonnie Boer was a trainee in this Michelin restaurant.
Martin Veltman was a patriarch of advertising and a poet. Although the slogan ‘Heerlijk Helder Heineken’ is claimed by many, including Freddy Heineken himself, it was Veltman who created it, just like ‘s Lands grootste kruidenier blijft op de kleintjes letten’ (Albert Heijn) and many others that have become part of the cultural heritage of the Netherlands. But Veltman made another historic decision. He did something that was common practice in the days of Rembrandt and Frans Hals and has now become very rare. He commissioned a group portrait of a very special group of outstanding people. And he did this twice. With very different results: Kik Zeiler, apparently effortless, connects an after dinner snapshot to The Last Supper whereas Marike Bok let the gentlemen pose for her all separately in Hotel Des Indes and then brought them together as the new Regents of the St. Elisabeths Gasthuis. Both works are now for sale for the first time.

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NRC 12 - Fine Art

by
Adams Amsterdam Auctions
December 2, 2019, 6:30 PM CET

Amsterdam, Netherlands

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