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Gatekeeper by Pieter Breugel

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Hovering and helmeted with a silly knot this keeper, holding a pitchfork, looks at archangel Michal conquering the rebellious angels and condemning them to eternal suffering in hell, by which their once so heavenly appearances decay into terrifying reptile-like monsters.

ABOUT THE ARTWORK: THE FALL OF THE REBELLIOUS ANGELS (1562)Archangel Michael is getting even with his rebellious colleague Lucifer and his followers. This story symbolizes how the decay of the church and its clergy was brought to a stand still in the 16th century.

ABOUT THE ART PERIOD: The painter Pieter Breughel the Elder (ca. 1528-1569) is mainly known as a chronicler of everyday life in the Flemish countryside with paintings such as "Proverbs" and "Children's games", but Breughel's work has another side which reminds us of Hieronymus Bosch (+1516). Like with all early artists the warning morality was a large factor. People felt they were surrounded by a hostile world filled with natural and human violence, epidemic diseases and other threats for which they had no other explanation but the hands of fate. It was left to artists and the clergy to show how destiny could be influenced favorably. Nevertheless, Breugel was lighthearted as well. He evoked a feeling of alienation by placing playful scenes before impressing and beautifully painted landscapes and with hilarious exaggeration "Pieter the funny one", as was his nickname, provoked laughter amongst his contemporaries. Part of the Parastone Museum Collection.

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7.5 in. x 5 in. x 1.5 in.


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