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A Peasant

The peasant holds an object in his right hand that looks like the stem of a pipe, suggesting that Teniers intended to depict a smoker. Together with A Peasant holding a Glass (DPG106), that forms a pair with this painting, this is a reoccurring theme in Teniers’ oeuvre.

Both peasants are reminiscent of compositions of Adriaen Brouwer who lived in Antwerp in the 1630s and whose paintings Teniers studied closely. Teniers adopted interior scenes with smoking, drinking and gambling people of the lower classes and in these two works he also comes close to Brouwer’s lose painting style. Teniers’ sketch-like style is somewhat unusual for his choice of the copper support as its smooth surface encouraged a more fine style of painting. The artist frequently chose themes for rendering on copper with rich details like the Kitchen Interior of 1644 (Mauritshuis, The Hague) with its beautifully rendered still lifes, painted in very fine brushstrokes and luminous colors.

Not currently on display

David Teniers the younger
8.5 x 6.6 cm
Oil on copper
SIgned, top left: DT.F (DT in monogram)
Bourgeois Bequest, 1811
Accession number
Adopted by Vicki Feaver and Eugenie Turton in memory of Georgina Turton (1913-2005), 2005