A preparatory drawing for the composition “The Temptation of Christ” by Jan Breughel the
Elder is in the Institut Néerlandais, Frits Lugt Collection, Paris. This preparatory drawing by Breughel was meticulously copied by the engraver Aegidius de Sadeler mimicking the virtuoso way in which the draughtsman suggested the wind sweeping the foliage of the trees upwards. In this presently not ascribed painting Breughels artistry is closely replicated again, as a mirror image of the original drawing now, giving the painting an unusual graphic quality. The painterly qualities of “The Temptation of Christ” are abundant and show in the nuance in which depth is suggested by the minutest differences in color. The figures are added confidently and swift, suggesting the hand of a Master: the devil is depicted ugly and has the posture of a decrepit hermit, Christ is standing worthy and untouched by the ado around him. Both figures are notated with utmost confidence; their hands consisting of only a few virtuoso brushstrokes.
Site by Artimin