Newly Attributed Works by Brueghel Dynasty to Go on View in the UK

The two works were previously thought to be by copyists.

Pieter Brueghel the Younger Wedding Dance in the Open Air (1607-1614). Photo ©Holburne Museum Photograph by Dominic Brown
Pieter Brueghel the Younger Wedding Dance in the Open Air (1607-1614). Photo ©Holburne Museum Photograph by Dominic Brown.

Next year, the Holburne Museum in Bath will unveil two newly attributed works to Pieter Brueghel the Younger and David Teniers the Younger, as part of an exhibition devoted to the legendary Brueghel dynasty. The two works were discovered in the museum’s collection while preparing for the exhibition.

“Brueghel: Defining a Dynasty” is comprised of 35 works by the Flemish painters, made over 150 years, starting with Pieter Brueghel the Elder, who was followed by his sons, Pieter Brueghel the Younger and Jan Brueghel the Elder; as well as by David Teniers the Younger, who married Anne Brueghel, Jan’s daughter, in 1637.

“This exciting new exhibition not only shines a light on the quality of the Holburne Museum’s Flemish paintings, but also on the wealth of paintings by the Bruegel dynasty in the UK,” Jennifer Scott, Holburne Museum director and co-curator of the exhibition, said in a statement.

Wedding Dance in the Open Air (1607-1614) was originally attributed to a copyist or follower of Brueghel. The work—the only version of this scene in a UK public museum—was re-attributed to Pieter Brueghel the Younger after a some essential conservation and a technical examination. The work will now be a central feature of the exhibition, which opens in February 2017.

“Unfortunately, Pieter the Younger is often thought of as a lesser Brueghel—I think perhaps because he had the misfortune of sharing his father’s first name,” Scott told the BBC. “This gives us an opportunity now to look at his work and to see how he was innovative and really fresh in his approach even though he was often recreating the scenes that made his father so famous.”

David Teniers the Younger <i>Boy Blowing Bubbles</i> (c.1640). Photo © Holburne Museum

David Teniers the Younger, Boy Blowing Bubbles (c.1640). Photo ©Holburne Museum.

Another work discovered in the making of this landmark exhibition is Boy Blowing Bubbles (c.1640) by David Teniers the Younger, previously attributed to an “imitator of David Teniers the Younger.” The museum made this announcement after some research and taking a fresh look at the history of the work.

The exhibition will explore the Brueghel family dynamic, looking into how this fascinating line of painters carried forth the family style of painting, developing it over 150 years.

Brueghel: Defining a Dynasty” will be on view at  The Holburne Museum, Bath from February 11 – June 4, 2017.


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