Painter/Artist: Antoine Le Nain

French School. One of three brothers whose work is not distinguished with certainty.


PEASANTS AT A MEAL In a bare room seven figures are grouped round a small table covered with a long cloth near the fireplace on the left. In the centre, seated at the far side of the table, is the master raising a glass in his left hand, and looking to right at an old man seated in profile on a stool, behind whom on the extreme right stands a boy, and in the background over the master’s left shoulder a youth tuning a fiddle. On the left of the table sits another peasant on a bench nearly in profile, and behind him at the extreme left the mistress stands, and between him and the master in the background a small child seated. In the left foreground a little dog.

Signed and dated 1642.

“A singular anomaly amidst the pompous and theatrical art [of the French School] of the seventeenth century.” (Burger.)