(b. 1530, Antwerpen, d. 1574, Antwerpen)

Woman Selling Vegetables

Oil on canvas, 110 x 160 cm
Rockox House, Antwerp

Like landscape and genre paintings, the still life also achieved a high degree of independence at an early date, through the pioneering work of Pieter Aertsen and his nephew and pupil Joachim Beuckelaer. These masters also played a significant part in the development of the genre scene. After a number of tentative attempts, fully-fledged genre paintings were first produced by Quentin Massys, followed by Jan Sanders van Hemessen and Marinus van Reymerswaele. But it was Aertsen and Beuckelaer who popularised the genre by concentrating on market and fair scenes. In the Woman Selling Vegetables, Beuckelaer combined still-life elements with figures, achieving a powerful, decorative effect by the introduction of strong local colours.