JAIC 1997, Volume 36, Number 1, Article 1 (pp. 1 to 16)
JAIC online
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation
JAIC 1997, Volume 36, Number 1, Article 1 (pp. 1 to 16)

WITH PAINT FROM CLAUS & FRITZ: A STUDY OF AN AMSTERDAM PAINTING MATERIALS FIRM (1841–1931)

MICHEL LAAR, & AVIVA BURNSTOCK



4 THE PAINT

The Van Beek firm still possesses a tube of sap green paint from Claus & Fritz (fig. 10), while in Dijsselhof's paint box at the Drents Museum at Assen, in addition to a few tubes of the manufacturers Oud Hollandse (Scheveningen), P. Briault (Paris), Dr. Fr. Schoenefeld (Düsseldorf), H. Schmincke & Co. (Düsseldorf), and Schouten en Voskuyl (Amsterdam), there are at least 62 Claus & Fritz tubes containing oil paint in 34 different colors. The tubes come in four different sizes, and one of them, emerald green, is labeled “Study Oil Paint.” Since the tubes have been little used, Dijsselhof probably bought them toward the end of his life. The Rijks-prentenkabinet in Amsterdam also has a box with many Claus & Fritz tubes, which came from the painter Hendrik van Borssum Buisman (1873–1951), who was also curator of the Teylers Museum at Haarlem.

Fig. 10. Paint tubes from Claus & Fritz from the paintbox of Gerrit Willem Dijsselhof, Drents Museum, Assen, the Netherlands, and the sap green tube from the firm of Van Beek, Amsterdam. The tube of emerald green, lower left, carries the descriptive “Study Oil Paint.” Photograph courtesy of the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

A good idea of the range of colors sold by the firm is also given in a price list issued in January 1928 by the Amsterdam firm of A. J. van der Linde (fig. 11). The wide assortment listed under the name Claus & Fritz includes cadmium colors, modern pigments that only came into commercial production around 1910 (Gettens and Stout 1966, 149). They illustrate that Claus & Fritz offered modern pigments, while the firm's thoroughness is indicated by the presence of Antwerp, Prussian, and Berlin blue, pigments generally regarded as synonymous. Unfortunately, these three colors are not present in the paint boxes of Dijsselhof and Van Borssum Buisman, so it is not yet possible to discover the differences between them. Also characteristic of the firm's range are the colors vine black and geranium lake. The brown mars colors, which were among those bought by Dijsselhof, do not appear in this list, however. Bitumen is on the price list, but neither Dijsselhof nor Van Borssum Buisman appears to have used it.

Fig. 11. Price list from the A. J. van der Linde artists' supply shop, Amsterdam, 1928, showing Claus & Fritz paints for sale. Photograph courtesy of the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam


Copyright © 1997 American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works