Johann Soentgens - Mathijs van Somer

Johann Jacob Soentgens of Cologne was a printmaker of merely local importance. His small graphic oeuvre has never been catalogued or illustrated before.

Nikolaus Solis began his career in the prolific workshop of his father Virgil Solis (see vols. LXIII-LXX). He rarely succeeded in escaping his father’s shadow, but also took advantage of his famous name, as demonstrated by the similar form of his monogram. The catalogue of his prints is based on Passavant, Andresen, F. T. Schulz (Thieme-Becker) and indications given by O’Dell-Franke. His oeuvre appears here fully illustrated for the first time.

It may be surprising to find a Dutch-born artist in the German series: Mathijs van Somer. It was decided to include him because he worked in Germany for most of his life. There is no evidence that Mathijs belonged to the more famous dynasty of namesakes, published in the Hollstein Dutch and Flemish series, vol. XXVII. His surprisingly prolific graphic work is listed and illustrated for the first time. The number of his prints has grown to 449 items, mostly portraits. Only some of them were catalogued in older portrait indexes, such as Panzer, Diepenbroick or Singer. The present list of 394 portraits might even keep on growing. As most of the portrait collections are organised by the names of the sitters, it would have far exceeded the time available for the author to have combed systematically through the large collections. He therefore based his catalogue on digitally accessible collections like the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel and on smaller but locally specialised collections, like that of the Museen der Stadt Nürnberg.

Published in 2007
Compiler: Dieter Beaujean
Editor: Rainer Schoch
ISBN: 978-90-77551-57-8
260 pp.

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