Two Horsemen near a Fountain
This picture has often been considered to be a companion piece to DPG77 due to their similar size, and their superficially similar subject matter (woman gives water to resting riders; dog in attendance). But they are certainly not of the same date: the use of the PHILS . W (PHILS in monogram) signature indicates that the picture was produced after 1646 (a dating of 1650–52 has been suggested). Stylistically, the piece can easily be seen as a transitional work on the road to the sophistication and mastery of the Halt of a Hunting Party (DPG78) - the same frieze-like arrangement of characters, the same slightly skewed horizontal panorama, even the careful balance of gesture. However, the gesture of the woman on the left looks stiff and studied in comparison to the theatrical posturing of the man with the hat in DPG78, and the horses have yet to achieve that Arabian perfection of form and movement.