Flemish painter 17th century - inv. 1057
This work is linked to Winter Landascape with Skaters (inv. 1056).
In the Landscape with Figures Near a Castle, the composition, divided into two parts with the river view to the right that merges into the distance, is inspired by Jan Brueghel the Elder (Brussels 1568 - Antwerp 1625), while the figures in elegant dress near the castle refer more directly to paintings by Sebastian Vrancx (Antwerp, 1573 – 1647).
In a painting by Vrancx in the Cagnola Collection in Gazzada there are some small figures identical to those found in this work.
The Winter Landscape with Skaters also recalls works by Jan Brueghel the Elder, such as, for example, one in the Lodi Collection in Campione d’Italia (with Josse de Momper). It also reveals affinities with some landscapes by Christoffel van den Berghe (Middelburg, 1577-1642), a Dutch artist influenced by Flemish Brueghel-style landscape. It might therefore be possible that the author of these two works on copper was a Dutchman painting in the Flemish tradition.
The success enjoyed by Jan Brueghel the Elder’s landscapes and the large demand for them in collectors’ circles explain the large production of copies or paintings in the style of the master that often, as in this case, bear apocryphal signatures.