17th Century & Flemish Paintings Gallery Level 2, NGV International
This meticulously rendered eighteenth-century view shows the Zuidsingel, a tree-lined canal in Amersfoort, Utrecht. The building to the left of the bridge was described in 1660 as ‘one of the most beautiful houses of this town’. By the eighteenth century it was owned by Benjamin Cohen (1725–1800), a prosperous tobacco merchant. This portrait of the Cohen House predates 1780, when the house was remodelled to include a third storey. The house became even more admired after its alterations, not least by its owner, who appears in a drawing pointing to its new roofline. The Cohen House still exists, but the pretty brick teahouse shown here in the foreground has gone.