Monster Brains

Sean Äaberg's "Dungeon Breakout" Kickstarter

Sean Aaberg - DUNGEON BREAKOUT 1 Sean Aaberg - DUNGEON BREAKOUT 2 Sean Aaberg - DUNGEON BREAKOUT 3 Return to the Würstreich with the newest game from GOBLINKO! DUNGEON BREAKOUT is a heavily flavored, tile placement party game, set in the same world and populated by the same weird characters and creatures as DUNGEON DEGENERATES: Hand of Doom. With easy-to-learn rules and fast game play action, DUNGEON BREAKOUT will be a hit with any crowd!

You’re trapped in the dungeon below Brüttleburg, but there is a chance for escape! Make your way through the maze-like corridors, collecting loot and battling monsters, and find the exit first to win! Watch out though, in addition to lurking monsters, there could be a jailor around the next corner, or one of your opponents trying to stop you!

Check out the kickstarter here! Only seven days left!

Pieter Huys (1519 - 1584)

Pieter Huys - Inferno, 1570Inferno, 1570

37.262The Last Judgement, 1555-60

Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 1577The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 1577

15.133Attributed to Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony

Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 1547The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 1547

Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, Circa 1520 - 1584The Temptation of Saint Anthony, Circa 1520 - 1584

Attributed to Pieter Huys - The Descent into Limbo , 16th CAttributed to Pieter Huys - The Descent into Limbo , 16th Century

Pieter Huys or Follower of Huys - Saint Christopher Carrying the Christ Child through a Sinful World, 1550-1600Pieter Huys or Follower of Huys - Saint Christopher Carrying the Christ Child through a Sinful World, 1550-1600

Pieter Huys or Jan Mandijn - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 16th CenturyPieter Huys or Jan Mandijn - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 16th Century

Attributed to Pieter Huys - Saint Christopher, 1584Attributed to Pieter Huys - Saint Christopher, 1584

Circle of Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 16th CCircle of Pieter Huys - The Temptation of Saint Anthony, 16th Century

Attributed to Jan Mandijn or Pieter Huys - The Mocking of Job, 1550Attributed to Jan Mandijn or Pieter Huys - The Mocking of Job, 1550

Image sources include - The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Sothebys and Wikipedia

Joseph Heintz the Younger (1600 - 1678)

Joseph Heintz the Younger -  The Alchemist, 1650 The Alchemist, 1650
 Joseph Heintz the Younger -  The Alchemist, detail 2, 1650The Alchemist, detail 1, 1650

Joseph Heintz the Younger -  The Alchemist, detail 1, 1650The Alchemist, detail 2, 1650

Joseph Heintz II - Witchcraft Scene, 1600-78Witchcraft Scene, 1600-78

Joseph Heintz the Younger -  Pluto comes from Tartarus, 1640.Pluto comes from Tartarus, 1640.

Joseph Heintz the Younger - Pluto and Proserpina, variation of Jacques Callot's "Temptation of Saint Anthony" 17th Century, second photoPluto and Proserpina, variation of Jacques Callot's "Temptation of Saint Anthony" 17th Century

Joseph Heintz the Younger - Allegory of the Apocalypse , 1674Allegory of the Apocalypse , 1674

Richard Doyle (1824-1883)

Richard Doyle - The Enchanted Fairy Tree (A Fantasy Based on The Tempest by William Shakespeare) Detail 2

Richard Doyle - The Enchanted Fairy Tree (A Fantasy Based on The Tempest by William Shakespeare) Detail 1

Richard Doyle - The Enchanted Fairy Tree, or a fantasy based on The Tempest by William ShakespeareThe Enchanted Fairy Tree, or a fantasy based on The Tempest by William Shakespeare

Richard Doyle (1824-1883), "The enchanted tree, a fantasy based on the "Tempest" (1845)The enchanted tree, a fantasy based on the "Tempest" (1845)

Richard Doyle - The Knight and the Jötun, 1865-75The Knight and the Jötun, 1865-75

Richard Doyle - The Fairy's FlightThe Fairy's Flight

Richard Doyle - Knight on horseback attacking large dragon

Richard Doyle - The woodman and the elvesThe Woodman And The Elves

Richard Doyle - God Thor Chasing the DwarfsGod Thor Chasing the Dwarfs

Richard Doyle - God Thor Chasing the Dwarfs, 1878God Thor Chasing the Dwarfs, 1878

Richard Doyle - Pursued by ElvesPursued by Elves

Richard Doyle - The Fairy Tree, 1865The Fairy Tree, 1865

Richard Doyle - The Dragon of WantleyThe Dragon of Wantley

Richard Doyle - The Altar cup in Aagerup, the trolls give chaseThe Altar cup in Aagerup, The Trolls Give Chase

Richard Doyle - THE DRAGON SLAYERThe Dragon Slayer

Richard Doyle -The Little Princess's Birthday DragonThe Little Princess's Birthday Dragon

Richard Doyle - The Knight and the SpectreThe Knight and the Spectre

Richard Doyle - The Witch's Home, No.2. "She's Off" 1875The Witch's Home, No.2. "She's Off" 1875

Richard Doyle - Title Uknown

Richard Doyle - The Witch's Home, No. 1 - Broom Waiting- Coming Out, 1870sThe Witch's Home, No. 1 - Broom Waiting- Coming Out, 1870s

Richard Doyle - The Pied Piper of Hamelin, 1885Richard Doyle - The Pied Piper of Hamelin, 1885

Richard Doyle - Snow White and Rose Red, 1877Snow White and Rose Red, 1877

Richard Doyle - Elves in a Rabbit Warren, 1875Elves in a Rabbit Warren, 1875

Richard Doyle - Fairies and Red-Squirrels in a ForestFairies and Red-Squirrels in a Forest

Richard Doyle - Wood Elves Hiding and Watching a LadyWood Elves Hiding and Watching a Lady

Richard Doyle - In fairy land, an Elfin danceIn fairy land, an Elfin dance

Richard Doyle - Dancing FairiesDancing Fairies

Richard Doyle - A Foxhunter's NightmareA Foxhunter's Nightmare

Richard Doyle - Young girls attending goats, 2

Richard Doyle - Young girls attending goats

Richard Doyle - ‘Triumphal March of the Elf-King’, 1870Triumphal March of the Elf-King, 1870

Richard Doyle - The knight pursued by spritesThe knight pursued by sprites

Richard Doyle - RumplestiltskinRumplestiltskin

Richard Doyle - Punch's Vision At Stratford On AvonPunch's Vision At Stratford On Avon.jpg

Richard Doyle - illustration for story entitled "Bluebeards"Illustration from "Bluebeards"

Richard Doyle - Illustration from "Puck on Pegasus" by Henry Cholmondeley-Pennell, 1868Illustration from "Puck on Pegasus" by Henry Cholmondeley-Pennell, 1868

Richard Doyle - Punch Interior Art, 1847Punch Interior Art, 1847

Richard Doyle -  (Engraved by Dalziel)  illustration for J R Planché, An Old Fairy Tale Told Anew, 1866(Engraved by Dalziel)  illustration for J R Planché, An Old Fairy Tale Told Anew, 1866

Richard Doyle - An armed knight by a haunted tree

Richard Doyle - "Fairies Riding on a Dragon"

Richard Doyle - ‘Frontpiece’, “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1850Frontpiece from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1850

Richard Doyle - ‘Fortune’s Favourite’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849‘Fortune’s Favourite’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘The Feast of the Dwarfs’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2 ‘The Feast of the Dwarfs’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘Dragon Giant’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2 ‘Dragon Giant’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘Snow White and Rosy-Red’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2‘Snow White and Rosy-Red’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘Fortune’s Favourite, 2’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2‘Fortune’s Favourite, 2’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘The Dragon Giant’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2‘The Dragon Giant’,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

Richard Doyle - ‘The Little Man In Grey,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849.jp2‘The Little Man In Grey,  from “Fairy Tales From All Nations” by Anthony Reubens Montalba, 1849

12805.h.8  title page spreadInterior art from "The King of the Golden River" by John Ruskin, 1885

Richard Doyle - Color interior art from "The King of the Golden River" by John Ruskin, 1885Color interior art from "The King of the Golden River" by John Ruskin, 1885

Richard Doyle - The Battle of Elves and Crows, 1874The Battle of Elves and Crows, 1874

Richard Doyle - Dreams of fairies and mythical creaturesDreams of fairies and mythical creatures

Richard Doyle - Dick Doyle Tortured by Procession Ideas, from Dick Doyl's JournalDick Doyle Tortured by Procession Ideas, from Dick Doyl's Journal

Richard Doyle - Drawing for The Brothers Grimm tale "The Fairy Ring" The knight intrudes on the dining witch and dragon, 1846Drawing for The Brothers Grimm tale "The Fairy Ring" The knight intrudes on the dining witch and dragon, 1846

Richard Doyle - Drawing for The Brothers Grimm tale "The Fairy Ring" 1846Drawing for The Brothers Grimm tale "The Fairy Ring" 1846

Richard Doyle - A Book Full of Nonsense, Title PageA Book Full of Nonsense, Title Page

Richard Doyle - Illustrated Letters and More... From Hambourgh, 1948, Interior Art 01Illustrated Letters and More... From Hambourgh, 1948, Interior Art

Richard Doyle - Illustrated Letters and More... From Hambourgh, 1948, Interior Art 02Illustrated Letters and More... From Hambourgh, 1948, Interior Art

Richard Doyle - Doyle's nonense style monsters, in a letter to his father, 1843Doyle's nonense style monsters, in a letter to his father, 1843

Richard Doyle - Famous Great Sea Serpent, Punch Almanack, 1849Famous Great Sea Serpent, Punch Almanack, 1849

"Known, variously, by the nickname 'Dicky' and the pseudonym 'Dick Kitcat', Richard Doyle was one of the most popular illustrators of his time. A natural heir to George Cruikshank, Doyle was a humourist whose work ranged from social satire to representations of fairies and the 'little people'. Characterized by lyricism and lightness of touch, he worked for Punch during the formative years of the 1840s, and later became a sensitive interpreter of Thackeray. His 'elfin' (Muir, 102) masterpiece is In Fairyland (1869-70), a colour-book ostensibly designed for children which also appealed to adults and addressed adult themes in a coded form. Luxuriously produced, with intricate engravings on wood by Edmund Evans, this work set new standards in the field of book-production.

 Richard Doyle was born at 17 Cambridge Terrace, London, in September 1824. His father was the Irish cartoonist John Doyle (1783-1851), whose satirical prints were a scourge of the 1820s and thirties. Doyle was one of seven children, and all three of his (surviving) brothers were gifted artists. James (born 1822) was the author and illustrator of Evans's elaborate colour-book, The Chronicle of England (1864); Henry (b.1827) was an illustrator of note; and so was his youngest brother, Charles (born 1842, the father of Arthur Conan Doyle) However, Richard was unquestionably the most able of an exceptional family. Educated at home by his father, Dicky Doyle was a precocious talent.

 Aged only sixteen, he published a series of humorous envelopes for the newly-established Post Office, following this up with a satirical comment on Victorian neo-medievalism in the form of The Tournament (1840), a series of cartoons which was also a droll pastiche of the Germanic 'outline style'. In 1843 he joined the staff of Punch and in 1844 designed the intricate front cover, a teeming mass of fairies and elves milling around a rusticated title; revised in 1849, this manic opener established the magazine's emphasis on irreverent mockery, and was used as its signature image until the middle of the twentieth century. Doyle also provided quaint initials, by turns lyrical and surreal, and larger satirical works such as 'The Gold Rush' and 'Manners and Customs of Ye Englyshe' (1849). A devout Catholic who valued his Irish ancestry, he left the magazine in 1850 following an attack on Rome.

 Doyle worked thereafter as a freelance designer illustrating children's books, notably Mark Lemon's The Enchanted Doll (1849)and Ruskin's The King of the Golden River (1851). Other works, this time for adults, included The Foreign Tour of Messrs. Brown, Jones and Robinson (1854) in which he ridiculed the current vogue for tourism by showing a group of Englishmen bumbling their way around Europe, and Thackeray's pastiche of Ivanhoe, Rebecca and Rowena (1850). His collaboration with Thackeray was extended (and tested) in his detailed interpretation of the same author's acerbic novel of manners, The Newcomes (1854-55). This work, his only substantial commission for a contemporary novelist, revisited the blending of fantasy and psychological drama that had earlier characterised his work for Dickens's The Chimes (1845).

 In the sixties his publications divided fairly evenly between fairy books for children (an activity further supported by watercolours) and satirical works such Bird's Eye Views of Society , a series of fold-outs which helped to establish The Cornhill Magazine in 1861-2. His final, most impressive work was In Fairyland (1870, published 1869). Presented as a rich combination of coloured wood-engravings, an accompanying poem by William Allingham and an elaborate binding designed by the artist, In Fairyland was self-consciously designed as a treasure. However, its extravagant price (31 shillings and 6d)ensured that it was far too expensive for all except the most middle-class of households. Two thousand were printed, but records in the Longman Archive (University of Reading, United Kingdom) show that few were sold, a situation which led to the sale of remainders, in the form of a reissue with a revised title-page, in 1875.

 In Fairyland's economic failure reflected a change in taste and Doyle subsequently slipped into obscurity. He died of apoplexy (having collapsed on the steps of his club) in 1883, at the unusually young age of fifty nine. Following his death his juvenilia was reissued, principally his Journal of 1840 — a vivid visual record of the life of the times — Homer for The Holidays (1836), and a multi-coloured fantasy, Jack the Giant Killer. Doyle's reputation was eclipsed firstly by the artists of the 1860s and later by the sophisticated urbanities of Beardsley, Ricketts and the artists of the nineties.

 Doyle's oeuvre is well-known and his personal life and social milieu are equally well-charted, notably in Daria Hambourg's critical introduction (1948) and Rodney Engen's more extended analysis of 1983. He was a friend of Holman Hunt (Engen, 115-116) and was at home in the company of Millais and Rossetti, Dickens and Cruikshank. His special friend was Thackeray, who, like all of Doyle's associates, made a point of noting his sense of humour and easy charm.

 Yet Doyle was also known for his lack of lack of reliability. Characterized by a petulant dilatoriness and lack of focus, he was a poor collaborator. He was consistently late with his illustrations for The Newcomes, only meeting his commitments when Thackeray confronted him with the prospect of the work being passed back into the author's own hand. The Dalziels, who commissioned and engraved several of his works, were similarly frustrated, reporting how An Overland Journey to the Great Exhibition (1851) failed to exploit the interest generated by the event because the artist was outrageously slow and unresponsive. Doyle's excuses were often absurd, and the Dalziels reported that on one occasion he failed to meet a deadline because he had 'not got any pencils' (The Brothers Dalziel, 58). Such amateurism hampered the artist's success. Several books did not appear because he lacked the application needed to finish them, and completed work was often uneven in quality, patchily uniting accomplished designs and illustrations that were 'deplorably pedestrian' (Muir, p.102). Dicky Doyle's work is nevertheless a charming combination of comic burlesque, delicate drawing, a magical representation of the fairy world, mythology, satire, and intelligent interpretation. Widely collected, it visualizes mid-Victorian culture at its most wistful and amusing." - quote source


Image sources include Archive.org, Fulltable.com, Christie's, Heritage Auctions, Sofi's Flickr, Amber Tree Flickr,

The work of Richard's brother "Charles Altamont Doyle" who himself was the father of Sherlock Holmes author "Arthur Conan Doyle" was posted here a few days ago.

Richard Doyle's illustrations of Jack the Giant killer were recently posted here. His work was previously posted here in 2007.

Monster Brains Turns 14!

Matt Furie - Monster Brains Logo 1Matt Furie

Monster Brains was created 14 years ago on January 23rd, 2006.  I have many great posts planned for 2020 and beyond. If you've enjoyed what I've contributed to Monster Brains over the nearly decade and a half, please consider donating to the site.

Any donation from you makes it easier for me to continue finding and sharing amazing and obscure art related to the field of monsters at Monster Brains!


MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Aleksandra WaliszewskaAleksandra Waliszewska

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Johnny RyanJohnny Ryan

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - John Kenn MortensenJohn Kenn Mortensen

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Trevor HendersonTrevor Henderson

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Fufu FrauenwahlFufu Frauenwahl

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Marcus ShaferMarcus Schäfer

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Dieter VDODieter Van der Ougstraete

MONSTER BRAINS LOGO - Michael SkattumMichael Skattum

Sean Aaberg - Monster BrainsSean Aaberg

Charles Altamont Doyle (1832 – 1893)

Charles Altamont Doyle - TemptationTemptation

Charles Altamont Doyle - Meditation, Self Portrait, 1885-93Meditation, Self Portrait, 1885-93

Charles Altamont Doyle - The seat of fairies is not always enviable. The seat of fairies is not always enviable

Charles Altamont Doyle - The Spirits of the Prisoners, 1885The Spirits of the Prisoners, 1885

Charles Altamont Doyle - The Spirits of the Prisoners, second versionThe Spirits of the Prisoners, second version

Charles Altamont Doyle - A Dance around the MoonA Dance around the Moon

Charles Altamont Doyle - Drawing from "The Doyle Diary" 1889 (1) Drawing from "The Doyle Diary" 1889

Charles Altamont Doyle - Saint Giles, His BellsSaint Giles, His Bells

Charles Altamont Doyle - PloughingPloughing

Charles Altamont Doyle - Nemo Me Impune Lacessit as the Frog Said Beyond the ThistleNemo Me Impune Lacessit as the Frog Said Beyond the Thistle

Charles Altamont Doyle - Illustration for Goethe's Faust, WalpurgisnachtIllustration for Goethe's Faust, Walpurgisnacht

Charles Altamont Doyle - Fairy folk celebrating around the ploughFairy Folk Celebrating Around the Plough

Charles Atamont Doyle  - The pianistThe Pianist

Charles Altamont Doyle - The Unseen AudienceThe Unseen Audience

Charles Altamont Doyle - Drawing from "The Doyle Diary" 1889 (2)Painting from "The Doyle Diary" 1889

Charles Altamont Doyle - Drawing from "The Doyle Diary" 1889 (3) Painting from "The Doyle Diary" 1889

Charles Altamont Doyle - Please don't tell the singing birdsPlease don't tell the singing birds

Charles Altamont Doyle - Scare CrowScare Crow

Charles Altamont Doyle - Dancing Fairies, 1850Dancing Fairies, 1850

After Charles Altamont Doyle - The Mummelsee, and the Water-MaidensAfter Charles Altamont Doyle - The Mummelsee, and the Water-Maidens

Charles Altamont Doyle - FairiesFairies

'''Charles Altamont Doyle was born on 25th March 1832. Today he is mainly remembered for being the father of Scottish writer Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes. However, Charles Altamont Doyle was a talented illustrator and watercolourist. He was the son of Irish artist John Doyle, the political cartoonist known by the pen name as H.B., and Marianna Conan Doyle. Charles Altamont Doyle moved to Edinburgh in 1849, where he worked as an assistant surveyor at the Scottish Office of Work. It was in Edinburgh that he married Mary Foley and they went on to have several children including Arthur Conan Doyle.

 In addition to his full-time employment he produced illustrations for a number of books, including for the Our Trip to Blunderland (1877) by Lewis Carroll, as well as designs for a number of journals. He also exhibited at the Scottish Royal Academy. His paintings, were often of fantasy scenes, many featuring fairies. He suffered with severe bouts of depression and alcoholism. As his condition worsened his work became darker and more sinister. Concerns about his heavy drinking and impact on his mental health led to his dismisal from his job in 1876, although he did receive a pension. Five years later, after growing family worries about his moods and desperate attempts to obtain alcohol, he was admitted to the nursing home of Blairerno House at Drumlithie in the Mearns. At times he still managed to obtain alcohol and there were incidents of disturbing behaviour. Following an aggressive attempt to leave Blairerno House he was sent to Sunnyside, Montrose Royal Lunatic Asylum on 26 May 1885.

 His bouts of depression worsened at Sunnyside and he began experiencing epileptic seizures. The effects of long term drinking had negative effects on his memory and mental health. It is described that he would tell staff that he was receiving messages from the unseen world and accused them of being devils. Nevertheless, he continued to paint and did experience calmer periods. In 1888 he completed illustrations for an edition of his son's first Sherlock Holmes novel A Study in Scarlet. His work over the period that he remained at the asylum often combined fantastical images of animals with other imaginary creatures. He maintained to his family that he was sane and had been wrongfully confined. In doing so he complied sketchbooks with caricatures, drawings of fairies and notes. He inscribed the frontispiece of his sketchbook diary: ‘Keep steadily in view that this Book is ascribed wholly to the produce of a MADMAN. Whereabouts would you say was the deficiency of Intellect? or depraved taste? If in the whole book you can find a single evidence of either, mark it and record it against me.’ 

In January 1891 he was transferred to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary and died in the Crichton Royal Institution in Dumfries on 10th October 1893. Arthur Conan Doyle remembered his father with fondness. In his autobiography he wrote ".. full of the tragedy of unfulfilled powers and of underdeveloped gifts. He had his weaknesses, as all of us have ours, but he had also some very remarkable and outstanding virtues. A tall man, long-bearded, and elegant, he had a charm of manner and a courtesy of bearing which I have seldom seen equalled. His wit was quick and playful. He possessed, also, a remarkable delicacy of mind which would give him moral courage enough to rise and leave any company which talked in a manner which was coarse…" Arthur Conan Doyle mounted an exhibition of his father's works in 1924 at the Brook Galleries in London, which were praised by Irish playwright and 1925 Nobel Prize in Literature winner George Bernard Shaw.

 The Doyle Diary, containing a facsimile of works from a sketchbook he created from March to July 1889 while at Sunnyside, Montrose Royal Lunatic Asylum, was published in 1978, bringing his work to a wider audience and gaining the artist greater appreciation. One of his paintings ‘The Spirits of the Prisoners,’ is now in Australia. It is described in a description by the Art Gallery of New South Wales: " 'The spirits of the prisoners' is a phantasmagoric scene with fairies, imps and animals cascading over the rooftop of Montrose Asylum and down its dark, brooding walls. It reveals with such surreal clarity the painter’s disturbed or joyful visions of the spirit world, here surveyed by the bearded apparition in the clouds – a clearly identifiable portrait of the artist himself, shows those creatures swooping and circling around the asylum." ''' - quote source

Image sources include Lyon and TurnbullWellcome Collection and Christies.

Charles Altamont Doyle was previously mentioned here in 2009.

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg, 17th-18th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Grotesque Scenes, 17th Century

Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Grotesque Scene With Animals, Late 17th- early 18th Century

Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Opera Nova Curiosa,  1695Opera Nova Curiosa,  1695

Master of the Fertility of the Egg - A Concert Of Animals, Birds and Stylised Figures, Late 17th - Early 18th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 2, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 4, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 3, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 6, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - At the Cobbler’s, 17th CenturyAt the Cobbler’s

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 8, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 7, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - At the Wigmakers, 17th CenturyAt the Wigmakers

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 9, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 5, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - The Banquet of Diogenes, 17th CenturyThe Banquet of Diogenes

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Animal and Stylized Figure Scene 1, 17th Century

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - The Discourse of Diogenes, 17th CenturyThe Discourse of Diogenes

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Watermelon Regatta, 17th CenturyWatermelon Regatta

The Master of the Fertility of the Egg - Watermelon Regatta, detail, 17th CenturyWatermelon Regatta, detail


"Maestro della Fertilità dell'Uovo or Master of the Fertility of the Egg is the name given to a yet to be identified painter active in the second half of the 17th and early 18th century in Brescia. The name is based on a work entitled La fertilità dell' Uovo (The Fertility of the Egg), which depicts dwarfs, geese and lobsters hatching eggs and is in the collection of the Milwaukee Art Museum.

 The art historian Mariolina Olivera was the first to isolate a group of works by this master in her 1990 monograph Faustino Bocchi e l'arte di figurar pigmei. She placed the master in the circle of Faustino Bocchi, an artist active in Brescia around the same time and known for his genre paintings with dwarfs. The master’s oeuvre distinguishes itself from Bocchi’s more dreamlike work through its biting, satirical edge.

 The identity of the Master of the Fertility of the Egg has yet to be determined. Some art historians have suggested he was Bernardino Dehò (1675-1717) from Cremona while others have pointed at Angelo Esseradts, known as ‘il Fiammingo’ (the Fleming), whose name was also Italianised as Everardi. Everardi was Bocchi’s teacher and introduced the bizarre and grotesque elements of Flemish art to Brescia.

 The works of this master typically depict grotesque figures (usually dwarfs) and animals engaging in various human activities. The works generally ignore space and are characterized by strong foreshortening. The figures are often portrayed in profile and stand out against the dark, mostly flat backgrounds. This gives them the impression of being cut out. The persons and animals in the compositions engage in disorganised actions and reactions. The compositions are full of absurd and grotesque elements and it is often difficult to make out what exactly is going on. The master’s raucous style appears to constitute some form of 'moral zoology'. The absurd characters are possibly intended to show the madness of the human condition, and the vanity and ridiculousness of life." - quote source

Artist previously shared here.

Pages