Large Alpine Landscape Pieter Bruegel Buy Art Prints Now
from Amazon

* As an Amazon Associate, and partner with Google Adsense and Ezoic, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
Email: [email protected] / Phone: +44 7429 011000

Pieter Bruegel the Elder was not just a highly skilled landscape painter, but also able to create the same compositions within other mediums, such as engravings. The Large Landscapes was a series of works in this medium which were then printed and sold in relatively limited numbers to a select few patrons.

Bruegel again looks beyond the flat lands of his local region in order to capture the mountainous region of this alpine landscape. A damaged fence leads up to the right of the foreground, helping to underlining the dramatic slopes found here whilst in the distance we see an almost endless fluctuation of hills as well as very small items within them. One gets the impression that we are looking at a great expanse of land from the top of a hill, though a flatter region does exist within the centre of the composition. The style and content found here is entirely consistent with the other elements of this series, with Bruegel also making use of a similar region within his Alpine Landscape with Deep Valley engraving. He would then work with others in order to turn these designs into sellable prints.

Painting and drawing would be Bruegel the Elder's main interest and also expertise. The 16th century included a number of high class engravers across Northern Europe and for that reason he chose to employ their services for this project. Once the designs were complete, they would set about converting them into engravings, which would then be printed and distributed. There were many purposes for these prints, such as bringing in an extra stream of income as well as being able to illustrate their skills to a wide audience for the first time. This then potentially could bring in new patrons from neighbouring countries, some of whom were also starting to build up reserves of wealth through new trade routes across Europe and beyond. These prints could also show off the qualities of this region's technical expertise, taking in a variety of different disciplines together and also indicating the benefits of effective collaboration.

Those interested in landscape art may find other related works in this genre when visiting the owners of these Bruegel engravings in front of us here. The Met in NY holds a variety of paintings from European and American artists that will likely interest you, many with brighter colours than the monochrome style that Bruegel used within his printed engravings. Other items that might prick your interest include The Oxbow by Thomas Cole, The Grand Canal by JMW Turner and also The Horse Fair by Rosa Bonheur. In all, there is enough art here to keep you going for several days, even before taking a look at the other spheres of their incredible collection that draws on other civilisations and cultures within a series of different departments.