TIELING, Lodewijk
(active 1695-1700 in Amsterdam)

The Ark

Oil on canvas, 118 x 156 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Formerly this painting was catalogued as "Dutch School, later seventeenth century." The attribution to the little-known Lodewijk Tieling is based on a reference to this painting in a Leiden auction in 1778. The composition of the painting was inspired by Cornelis Snellinck (c. 1605-1669), active in Rotterdam. It is also possible that both Tieling and Snellinck based their composition on a missing work by Cornelis Saftleven or some other common source.

The story of Noah and the Art is told in the Genesis. In the present painting, Noah appears in the left, with his wife behind him and a son and daughter-in-law to the right. Noah instructs two younger, well-dressed women, who carry earthenware vessels. In the lower part of the canvas, the painter depicted a great variety of domestic and wild animals. The sources of this representation are the Paradise pictures of Jan Brueghel the Elder and Roelant Savery.