Brower in his Painting Room, a Portrait of himself, (painting)
Brower, Adrian 1608-1640
Appears in exhibition catalog as entry no. 148 (Sale info: For Sale).
"This is a very rare specimen of this artist, and an engraving has been taken from this picture. His pictures were taken from low life, such as droll conversations, feasts, taverns, drunken quarrels, boors playing and disputing at cards, &c. but his expression is so full of life and character, the management of his colours is so surprising, and so much truth, united with exquisite high finishing, correctness of drawing, and wonderful transparence, appears in the works of this uncommon genius, that his paintings are more valuable and afford higher prices, than many of the works of other masters, who are of the greatest eminence. houbraken mentions an incident relative to this artist, which may not be unacceptable to the lovers of painting. 'It happened that when Brower went to Antwerp, he was taken up as a spy, and imprisoned in the same place where the duke d'arenberg was confined; that nobleman had an intimate friend- ship with Rubens, who often went to visit him in his confine- ment, and the duke having observed the genius of Brower (by some slight sketches which he drew with black lead,) without knowing who he was, desired Rubens to bring with him, at his next visit a pallette and pencils for a painter who was in custody along with him. The materials requisite for painting were given to Brower, who took for his subject a group of soldiers, who were playing at cards, in a corner of the prison; and when the picture was finished, and shewn to Rubens, he cried out, that it was painted by Brower, whose works he had often seen, and as often admired. The Duke delighted with the discovery, set a proper value on the performance; and although Rubens offered six hundred guilders for it, the Duke would by no means part with it, but presented the painter with a much large sum. Rubens immediately exerted all his interest to obtain an enlargement of Brower, and procured it by becoming his surety; he took him into his own house, clothed and maintained him, and took pains to make the world acquainted with his merit. But the levity of Brower's temper would not suffer him to continue long with his benefactor.' painted by Adrian Brower, who was born at Haerlem, 1608, died 1640." [Pp. 27-28.]
Descriptive Catalogue of Original Cabinet Paintings, now arranged in the Gallery, Doggett's Repository of Arts, entrance at No. 16, Market-Street, and may be viewed every day, from 8 in the morning till sunset; being a truly splendid and valuable Collection of one hundred and sixty-four Cabinet Paintings in elegant frames; selected on the Continent of Europe, at the Expense of thirty thousand dollars, and are warranted to comprise the works of the Great Masters, from the 13th Century to the Present Time.