Lingelbach presents a scene from the end of a hunting trip and we can see that a group of dogs have already returned and surround their keepers. One man holds a horn to his lips and uses the instrument to summon the others, animals and huntsmen alike, to join them. Lingelbach has also used this narrative to display his considerable skill at depicting the details of an exposed countryside, taking great care to render each individual leaf, gnarled trunk of wood and weather-beaten patch of heather.
As with this piece, Lingelbach’s settings evoke a feeling of space and distance, as if they were being remembered. In common seventeenth-century Flemish and Dutch practice, he was called on to enliven other artists’ landscapes by painting in the staffage, the figures and animals that animate the scene. Meindert Hobbema regularly hired Lingelbach to populate his landscapes.
Lingelbach was a German born painter, who was an influential artist from the second generation of the Bambocciate painters. The Bamboccianti were Dutch genre painters who visited Rome in the 17th Century and captured the city’s bustling piazzas and ports. The term Bamboccianti comes from the Italian word for “puppet”, which describes the puppet-like figures of the Dutch painter Pieter van Laer (1599 – 1642), called Il Bamboccio; the name also references a physical deformity Laer had.
Lingelbach followed Laer’s style in Roman genre works, bringing his own Italianate style into influence of Northern European painters. He is one of the few Dutch painters of the Bamboccianti, whose works are documented in depth, making his influence greater in the progression of the style, (Grove Dictionary of Art). Some of his works in Rome were once attributed to Pieter van Laer, but are now rightfully claimed to be Lingelbach’s, such as his, Roman Street Scene with Card Players, (National Gallery, London). These works show the Italian influence of Caravaggio (1571 – 1610) in their realism and refined chiaroscuro effect (Enchanting the Eye, by Christopher Lloyd). This is also seen in his work, A mounteback and other figures before a locanda with a capriccio view of the Piazza del Popolo, Rome, (Royal Collection, London).
As a youth Lingelbach was raised in Amsterdam and settled there after traveling to Italy and France. After returning to Amsterdam from Italy, around 1653, his work began to show an influence from Philips Wouwermans’ landscapes. His skill in painting genre figures is no less accomplished in his depictions of architectural and natural objects. He was often invited to paint the figures and animals within other artists landscape pieces, such as the Dutch master landscape painter, Meindert Hobbema (1638 – 1709) (Getty Center, Los Angeles). His study of architectural forms came from observing the paintings of another Bamboccianti, Viviano Codazzi, an Architectural Vedutisti, or view painter.