THE PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR
Pieter Huys became a master in the Antwerp Guild of Saint Luke in 1545. His style and choice of subject matter were influenced by Hieronymous Bosch (c. 1450-1516), whose popularity continued well into the second half of the sixteenth century. Huys's figures, however, are more lifelike and painted with thicker brushstrokes using richer colours. In terms of composition, the present picture, with its winding, receding planes of fantastical figures punctuated by an arched bridge and towers set against skies swarming with creatures, echoes that of Huys's Temptation of Saint Anthony , which is signed and dated '1547' (Musée du Louvre, Paris). The subject and composition of the present picture are repeated in another version sold at Christie's, London, 12 December 2001, lot 4 (£37,600). Huys operated a successful workshop practice; however, only four signed and dated works by him are known to exist.