“A river landscape with lumberjacks,” Jan Braigel Sr. – a description of the picture

“A river landscape with lumberjacks,” Jan Braigel Sr. – a description of the picture
“A river landscape with lumberjacks,” Jan Braigel Sr. - a description of the picture - 1

  • Posted by Jan Braigel Sr
  • Museum: Dresden Gallery
  • Year: 1608

Description of the picture :

The river landscape with lumberjacks is Jan Braigel the Elder. Board, oil. 47×46

   In the old days, it was customary to inherit the work of parents, especially creative professions. Dynasties of artists, sculptors, composers are known. Braigel Dynasty is one of the largest paintings in history. Usually in such families, the main figure rises above everyone: for example, in the Bach family – Johann Sebastian, and in the family of Braigel – Peter Braigel the Elder.

   Ian Braigel the Elder (Senior, since subsequently another Jan appeared in the genus – respectively, the Younger) received the nickname “Velvet” due to the special color of his painting. Oddly enough, five paintings of the master are stored in the Dresden Gallery, but there are no works of either the head of the dynasty or its other representatives. This is explained to some extent by the fact that, although Jan was inferior to his father’s talent, his official status was higher – he was the court artist of Archduke Albert. Consequently, the work of the master was stored in the monastic apartments, from where it was easier for them to get to other August meetings.

   Jan Braigel the Elder wrote in various genres – landscapes, still lifes (mainly flowers and animals), small-figure paintings on biblical, mythological and allegorical topics. The presented picture is one of the examples of his landscape painting. The work clearly demonstrates the genetic connection of Jan Braigel’s painting with the art of his father. The comparison with the picture of Peter Braigel “Landscape with the fall of Icarus” (about 1558, the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels), written 50 years before this work, involuntarily suggests itself. They are built similarly: the wavy line of the border of the sea and land divides the compositions into two parts. In both cases, a high point was chosen from which the landscape is written, filled with genre scenes, this allows you to spread the perspective widely. Perhaps the similarity ends on this: the picture of the father is full of dramatic intensity, while the son just has a landscape. And the difference is not in the plot, but in psychology: the art of the father reflects his winding spirit, while the son is in nature conflict-free.