VENNE, Adriaen Pietersz. van de
(b. 1589, Delft, d. 1662, The Hague)

Alle Baeten Helpen ("Every Gift Helps")

Oil on panel, 34 x 27 cm
Private collection

A blind beggar carries another beggar with a wooden leg through a landscape. In helping each other to overcome their handicaps, they illustrate the commonly known proverb "The lame leads the blind." However, here things may be going astray, since the lame beggar is pointing out directions with his hand, apparently forgetting that his companion cannot see him doing so.

Van de Venne's monochrome oil paintings on panel are universally referred to as grisailles although in this case it is actually in shades of brown (brunaille).