Saturday in the Museum with Pieter

Image: Pieter Aertsen, “Market Scene” (1569)

On our Saturday sidetrip to the world of art, we “visit” the Hallwyl Museum in Stockholm.  We continue our consideration of still life painting, which often intersect with the primary subject of this site: food.  This painting is by Pieter Aertsen, also call Lange Piet (Tall Pete).  One of Aertsen’s styles was the monumental genre scene, which combines still life and genre painting.

This painting incorporates an action scene of the market with the still life elements in the foreground.  Unlike many of Aertsen’s paintings there is no biblical theme.  In fact, it is quite ribald in its suggestions.

The painting is in the holdings of the Hallwyl Museum.  According to its provenance it was acquired by the Swedes in 1648 through “war theft.” According to the Met write-up of Dutch Still Life painting:

“Large “market” and “kitchen” still lifes, which often include figures, were first popularized during the mid-1500s in Antwerp by Pieter Aertsen and his pupil Joachim Beuckelaer. Aertsen returned to his native Amsterdam in about 1557 and inspired Dutch painters such as Joachim and Peter Wtewael to paint similar works.”


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