TENIERS, David the Younger
(b. 1610, Antwerpen, d. 1690, Bruxelles)

The Flautist

Oil on canvas, 25 x 20 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg

In the 1630s the young Teniers was strongly influenced by Adriaen Brouwer, who reintroduced into Flemish painting the practice of depicting common people, begun by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. Teniers rapidly moved on from depicting brawls in murky peasant huts and taverns to a sentimental scrutiny of the life of the poor. When he became court painter to the regent, Archduke Leopold William, his exalted patron appreciated such genre scenes as well as his formal portraits and depictions of notable events.