The Alchemist By Pieter Brueghel The Younger
1564/65-1636 • Flemish
Oil on oak panel
The ancient art of alchemy is the subject of this painting by Pieter Brueghel the Younger. The remarkable work is after an important 1558 drawing by his father, Bruegel the Elder. Unique in his oeuvre, The Alchemist was likely a special commission for an important client. Brueghel's work is a symbol of man’s folly in his quest for unearned gold.