David Teniers, Archduke Leopoldo Guillermo at his picture gallery in Brussel, 1647
"Archduke Leopoldo Guillermo, Governor of the Low Countries, appears in the center of the composition with his hat on. He is in the magnificent gallery of paintings and artworks he assembled in Brussels while governing the Low Countries. He is accompanied by four gentlemen, one of whom is Teniers, his court painter.
"The artist’s capacity to make small paintings with figures, which earned him so much fame, is used here to serve his patron. He achieves a special degree of fineness in rendering the works collected by the Archduke, many of which now belong to the Kunsthistorisches Museum of Vienna. This painting belongs to a style that was very fashionable among Flemish collectors in the eighteenth century: the picture gallery. This fashion began with some of Jan Brueghel’s depictions from the beginning of the century. Aristocrats and the bourgeoisie enjoyed having themselves depicted in these works, which portrayed them as connoisseurs or aficionados of the art of Painting, making them the perfect courtesans.
"This work was commissioned by Leopoldo Guillermo himself as a gift for Felipe IV, as both shared a love of painting.