Oil on oak panel. Flemish school of the beginning of the XVIIIth century by Karel Breydel.
Our two cavalry clashes, a testament to the art of the Antwerp specialist of the genre Karel Breydel, adopt identical stylistic canons. Both depict the battle raging in a clash of two enemy cavalries rushing headlong against each other. As a single figure, the group of combatants forms a swarming melee.
A true pair, the two compositions have been designed to form a whole where the groves of trees, like the curtains of a theater, close the whole (see main photo). With a light touch, in light glazes and fine highlights, Breydel accurately paints the play of light filtered by the foliage and the battles that continue to the horizon in the foggy distance by the smoke of the cannonades. In the first shots, where dead soldiers are lying on the ground, where horses are getting up from their falls and where weapons and lost hats are scattered here and there, the dramatic intensity of the battles reaches its climax.
The motif of the cavalry clash, a representation par excellence of the force of movement, met with immense success among 17th and 18th century artists, including the masters of the genre Adam Frans van der Meulen, called by Louis XIV to illustrate his victories, Jacques Courtois, known as the Burgundian, Karel Breydel and later François-Joseph Casanova.
Our two panels are nicely framed "à la française" with carved and gilded wooden frames. The two paintings can be sold separately.
Dimensions : 30 x 36 cm - 44 x 50 cm with the frame
Karel Breydel or Carel Breydel, called "The Knight Breydel" (Antwerp 1678 - id. 1733) was a Flemish painter specialized in the painting of landscapes, battle scenes, cavalry shocks. Most of the information about him is taken from the famous "Vie des Peintres Flamands, Allemands et Hollandois" by Jean-Baptiste Descamps. After an apprenticeship with Pieter Rijbraeck and Peter Ykens, he traveled through Germany, collaborated with his younger brother Frans Breydel in Kassel, and stayed in Amsterdam. In 1703, he settled permanently in his native city of Antwerp. After having been accepted as a master of the Guild, he met with immense success. Today, many of his works can be found in major European museums or in private collections.