Pieter Bruegel the Elder was a prominent Dutch painter of the Renaissance era, who is regarded as one of the greatest artists of his time. He came from an influential southern Netherlandish family of artists and chose to focus on landscape and peasant scenes. He broke away from traditional Renaissance art styles by making these subjects the focus in large paintings, thereby creating a niche for himself in the art world.
Born during a period of extensive change in Western Europe, Bruegel became a master in the guild of Saint Luke in Antwerp by 1551. This led to him gaining massive recognition for his skills and working with renowned inventors such as Giulio Clovio while he was still based abroad. Pieter Bruegel collaborated with Clovio during his stay in Rome where he worked as a draughtsman under several cardinals including Federico Borromeo.
Pieter Bruegel passed on at an early age leaving behind two notable heirs to his name, Pieter Brueghel Jr and Jan Brueghel. They continued their father’s work, bringing forth several famous artworks from their famous father’s artistry dynasty that spanned across generations.
Overall, Pieter Bruegel’s unique style stood out even amongst many talented painters during that time due to his attention to landscapes and everyday people. His influence can be seen through later works inspiring realism-orientated painters like Jean-Francois Millet impressed by his emphatic appreciation towards depicting rural life experiences.