- Inventory number
- Balen, Hendrik van; Brueghel “the Elder”, Jan
- Cybele and the Seasons in a Garland of Fruit
- Before 1618
- 106 cm x 75 cm
- On display
- Royal Collection
Two nymphs and numerous cupids hold a garland that frames a medallion where an offering to Ceres is depicted. The goddess of the Earth and of agriculture is shown being crowned by Spring while allegorical figures of the other seasons offer her their fruits. The cupids hold objects alluding to the signs of the Zodiac. Thus, the passage of time and the Earth's life cycles are emphasized.
This work is of doubtful attribution. The figures may have been painted by Hedrick van Balen, with the possible participation of Jan Brueghel, “the Elder”.
A copy of this painting appears in Brueghel's Taste (P01397), which was signed in 1618, and that helps to date this work in among the artist's later production. It is listed at Madrid's new Royal Palace in 1794, where it is attributed to Jan van Kessel.