Guinea Pigs in Historical Art Museum

Jan Brueghel (Elder)

(1568-1625)

Jan Brueghel the Elder (1568 – 13 January 1625) was a Flemish painter, son of Pieter Bruegel the Elder and father of Jan Brueghel the Younger. Nicknamed "Velvet" Brueghel, "Flower" Brueghel, and "Paradise" Brueghel, of which the latter two were derived from his floral still lifes and paradise landscapes, while the former may refer to the velveteen sheen of his colors. Many of his paintings are collaborations in which figures by other painters were placed in his landscapes. The most famous of his collaborators wasPeter Paul Rubens: the two collaborated on about 25 paintings including Mars Disarmed by Venus, a notable guinea pig painting. In 1606, Brueghel was appointed court painter for the Archduke Albert of Austria and the Infanta Isabella of Spain, who cultivated a menagerie in Brussels, giving the artist live animal models from around the globe.

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