(b. 1629, Leiden, d. 1667, Amsterdam)
Oil on panel, 56 x 42
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg
The painting is also known by the title "Oyster Eaters". It is a painting from the best period of the artist.
Despite Leiden being his birthplace, Gabriel Metsu is not regarded as one of the city's 'Feinmaler', as a result of the great variations in the style and quality of his work. It was not until the late 1650s that his work became close to that of the Feinmalers; Metsu's paintings from the early 1660s constitute a high point in his dialogue with the School and simultaneously of his creative output as a whole.