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Adriaen Brouwer Biography

Facts about Biography of Adriaen Brouwer

Adriaen Brouwer was born c.1605/06 in Oudenaarde. At 16 after his father’s demise Adriaen went to Antwerp and then to Holland. There he found a job in the workshop of Frans Hals (c 1623-24) in Haarlem and subsequently in Amsterdam. He returned to Antwerp in 1631 to join St Luke’s Guild and started a small workshop of his own .

Adriaen was imprisoned for a few months and hence was regularly in debt. Rubens, who owned 17 works of Brouwer had great appreciation for Brouwer’s work, and arranged for his release. Brouwer spent his sunset years at the residence of the well known engraver P.Pontius, who was also a co-worker with Rubens. Brouwer’s end came rather early in 1638 at Oudenaarde at the time of the Great Plague.

Adriaen chose the ordinary lives of people as his pet theme for his work. He turned out lively art work utilizing the styles of Pieter Bruegel the Elder, and imbibed the styles of Frans Hals. His themes absorbed the dirt and shabbiness of taverns and inns frequented by peasants, beggars and vagabonds, who drank,ate and played cards or dice, smoked, sang, quarrelled and fought. Freelance trouble making was interwoven with bitterness, hollowness and the grotesque. His pictures showed scenes from taverns with the visitors all in the background shrouded in shadows and the foreground displayed the main subject. Such a style projected an image of vast emptiness as the backdrop.

His choice of colors was specific for canvases he had olive brown, airy grey or yellow shades for the background. People’s attire in the main theme were in spotted grey-blue, cream and dusty pink hues. Brouwer’s technique was devoid of inhibition, but highly artistic. His works also included portraits and landscapes.

In Flemish Art School Brouwer’s works outshine others. Works of H.Ostade were a poor copy of Brouwer and were excessively brilliant and compliant . As far as bucolic themes were concerned Brouwer was second only to Bruegel. The greatest collection of 16 paintings of Brouwer are in the Alte Pinakothek in Munich


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