Workshop of Pieter Brueghel the Younger (Antwerp circa 1564-1638) The Bird Trap
Lot 64
Workshop of Pieter Brueghel the Younger (Antwerp circa 1564-1638) The Bird Trap
£60,000 - 80,000
US$ 100,000 - 130,000
amended
Auction Details
Lot Details
Other properties
Workshop of Pieter Brueghel the Younger (Antwerp circa 1564-1638)
The Bird Trap
oil on panel
38 x 56.5cm (14 15/16 x 22 1/4in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    Acquired by the present owner's family by at least 1958 and thence by descent

    The prototype for this popular and much repeated composition has yet to be securely identified. While the original had long been considered to be the painting in the Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, the attribution of that work to Pieter Brueghel the Elder has recently been questioned. Klaus Ertz suggests that the prototype may be a lost work by Jan Brueghel the Elder, inspired by his father's celebrated Hunters in the Snow of 1565 (see: K. Ertz, Pieter Brueghel der Jüngere (Lingen, 2000), p. 576).

    It has been suggested that the underlying message of the picture is the precariousness of life, the birds being oblivious to the threat of the trap, while the skaters are unaware of the dangers of the fragile ice. In the catalogue of the exhibition, Le Siècle de Brueghel, Georges Marlier identified the village depicted as Pede-Ste-Anne in Brabant (Brussels, Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts, 27 September-24 November 1963, p. 69).

    A copy of a certificate of authenticity by Dr. Klaus Ertz attributing the present painting in full to Pieter Brueghel the Younger from first hand inspection, dated 27 February 2009, is available.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that the present composition is particularly unusual among the numerous versions of The Birdtrap in that it includes the figures of Joseph leading Mary on a Mule in the centre ground to the left. This almost unique element is also found in Pieter Brueghel the Younger's version which was formerly in the Coppée Collection, Brussels (panel, 40 x 56 cm., signed and dated 1626).
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  1. Poppy Harvey-Jones
    Auction Administration - Old Master Paintings
    Bonhams
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    101 New Bond Street
    London, W1S 1SR
    United Kingdom
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