Pieter Aertsen Galleries
Dutch painter and draughtsman, active also in the southern Netherlands. He probably trained in his native Amsterdam but early on moved to Antwerp, where he enrolled in the Guild of St Luke as a master in 1535. In 1542 he was granted citizenship of the city. Among his pupils in Antwerp were Johannes Stradanus and later Joachim Beuckelaer, a cousin of the artist wife and his most loyal follower. The earliest known work by Aertsen is a triptych with the Crucifixion (c. 1545-6; Antwerp, Maagdenhuismus.) for the van den Biest Almshouse in Antwerp. From 1550 Aertsen development can be traced through a large number of signed and dated paintings. Religious works, mostly intended for churches, must have formed an important part of Aertsen output. His early paintings seem to have been strongly influenced by other Antwerp artists, as can be seen in the van den Biest triptych, where the figures are close to those in Jan Sanders van Hemessen background scenes. Van Hemessen influence is also strong in the pair of triptychs showing the Seven Sorrows of the Virgin and the Seven Joys of the Virgin (the latter dated 1554; both Zoutleeuw, St Leonard).