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  • NameJan Brueghel the younger
  • Activity/Titlepainter, draughtsman
  • Sexmale
  • Variant namesalternativ namnform: Jan Brueghel II
  • Nationality/DatesNetherlands, born before 1601-09-13, dead 1678-09-01
  • PlacesPlace of birth: Antwerpen, Belgien
    Place of death: Antwerpen, Belgien
BiographyLandscape- , history- and still life painter. The
eldest son of the painter Jan Brueghel I, Jan II was
taught by his father. In 1622 he travelled to Italy, where
he met his father’s patron, Cardinal Federico Borromeo.
Following his father’s unexpected death in 1625,
he returned to Antwerp and, becoming a member of
the local Guild of St. Luke in that year, took over his
father’s flourishing workshop while still quite young.
He spent the rest of his life in Antwerp, except for several
brief business visits to Paris in the 1650s. Jan II
played a central role in artistic life at Antwerp and collaborated
with other artists, including his father’s former
friends and collaborators, Peter Paul Rubens and
Hendrick van Balen I, who were recruited to add figures
and other staffage to his landscapes and flower garlands.
Jan II followed steadfastly in his father’s footsteps to
a significant degree, adopting the latter’s style in his
landscapes with figures, his allegorical scenes, his
flower still lifes and garlands. This has been the cause
of considerable and lasting confusion – also with
regard to his main subjects, landscapes, his allegorical
scenes, etc. From the documents published by Denucé
(1934) we learn that Jan II was a meticulous and slow
worker (it took him a whole day to paint two tulips).
He probably painted a good many works while still
working under his father, who retouched them, but
after his return from Italy his production was small at
first and there were few still lifes. Only later, when
prices for Brueghel paintings had come down, did
large numbers of flower pieces – vases as well as garlands
– emerge from his workshop. In early 1646, the
last year recorded in the surviving documents, they
were sold at the rate of about seven a month. It is likely
that the whole family was actively involved at this
stage, including his wife Anna Janssens, his sons Jan
Peeter and Abraham and his young nephew Jan van
Kessel I.
Landscape with a Water-mill
Before the Village Inn
The Three Graces