Jan Toorop (artist)

The collection: The literary legacy of the painter Jan Toorop (1858-1928): books by and about Toorop, many of them with notes by Toorop; letters to and from family members and friends.
Size: C. 100 books, c. 500 articles, cuttings and objects, c. 500 letters (4,5 metres).
Coverage: almost complete. Access: The items have been extensively described in the KB Catalogue.
More information: Ad Leerintveld 070-3140320.

The painter Jan Toorop began as an impressionist, but his style developed via pointillism to symbolism. He designed book bindings, illustrations, ceramic objects and advertisements. From 1905 onwards, his work was inspired by his Roman Catholic faith. The collection reveals his personal and artistic development and network.

Jan Toorop in his studio in Nijmegen, ca. 1911. Shelfnumber TC C 242. Nr. 4  
Jan Toorop in his studio in Nijmegen, ca. 1911

Jan Toorop in his studio in Nijmegen, ca. 1911. Shelfnumber TC C 242. Nr. 4

Jan Toorop. Vrouwenportret. S.l. ca. 1912. Potlood en krijt. Shelfnumber TC D 64.  
Jan Toorop, Vrouwenportret, ca. 1912

Jan Toorop. Vrouwenportret. S.l. ca. 1912. Potlood en krijt. Shelfnumber TC D 64.

Collection profile

The collection consists of Toorop's literary legacy: the artist's library and letters from artists, relatives and friends. It has a strong documentary nature. The correspondence can be divided into the family letters (including letters by Toorop himself, among others to his wife-to-be Annie Hall and his daughter Charley) , and letters from fellow artists, patrons and admirers (such as Louis Couperus and P.C. Boutens). In addition, the archive contains personal items such as photographs, notebooks and insignia.

Books, articles and cuttings on Toorop make up the lion's share of the collection. There are catalogues of exhibitions of his work, hand and presentation copies, books by others annotated by Toorop, and specimens and plates of bookbindings and illustrations he designed.

History of the collection

In 1929, his daughter Charley Toorop gave her father's archive to the KB. Since then, it has been systematically expanded by acquisitions and purchases of small clusters of correspondence, for instance the letters to and from Mies Elout-Drabbe (1965) and William Degouve de Nuncques (1990).

Relationship with other collections

Remarkably, in 1980 a croquis, a sketch of a live model, by Toorop was discovered on the flyleaf of a book from the library of Henriette and Richard Roland Holst-van der Schalk (also in the KB).

The RKD (Netherlands Institute for Art History) holds a collection of letters and contemporary art historical documents related to Toorop.

Literature

  • Jan Toorop. De Nijmeegse jaren 1908-1916. [Nijmegen] 1978.
  • V. Hefting, Jan Toorop. Een kennismaking. Amsterdam 1989.
  • K. Thomassen. 'Jan Toorop'. In: Verzamelaars en verzamelingen. Koninklijke Bibliotheek 1798-1998. Zwolle 1998, p. 115-121.