Flora Seated in a Wooded Landscape and Surrounded by Flowers
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Jan Brueghel II ( Antwerp 1601 - Antwerp 1678 )
Jan Brueghel II was the son of the artist Jan Brueghel I. He probably trained in the studio of his father and then went to Milan to meet his father’s patron, Cardinal Federico Borromeo. In the spring of 1624 Jan the younger travelled to Palermo, Sicily, with his childhood friend Anthony van Dyck. After the sudden death of his father in a cholera epidemic in Antwerp, Jan returned to the Netherlands, and by early August 1625 he was back in Antwerp, where he took over his father’s studio. He sold the pictures left by his father and successfully completed half-finished works. In 1625 Jan II joined the Antwerp Guild of St. Luke, and in 1626 he married Anna Maria, the daughter of Abraham Janssen; they had eleven children. Jan II headed a large studio with students and assistants, and in 1630–31 he became Dean of the Antwerp guild. The same year he was commissioned to paint an Adam Cycle for the French court. Thereafter, the studio declined and he produced a number of small paintings in his father’s manner that no longer fetched high prices. According to an inscription attributed to one of his sons on the last page of Jan’s journal, which ends in 1651, Jan II was also in France in the 1650s, working in Paris, although no information has yet emerged to indicate how long he stayed there and what he painted. In 1651 he worked for the Austrian court. He is mentioned again in Antwerp in 1657, and various sources indicate that he remained there until his death.