This painting is almost certainly one of a set of seasonal allegories, of which a very similar complete series is in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, also attributed to the studio of Frederik van Valckenborch (inv. nos. 2197, 2198, 2202, 2203). Here Winter is depicted by a market of meat and fish. The works in Vienna show Spring depicted by a market of flowers, Summer by a market of fruits and Autumn by a market of poultry. It is clear that Valckenborch and his assistants looked closely at the work of their predesessor Joachim Beuckelaer (circa 1639-circa 1673), not only in subject matter, but also in the composition structure with the see-throughs towards the back and the large still lifes in the foreground.
According to the exhibition catalogue (see under Exhibited), the present whereabouts of the three other paintings belonging to this Winter allegory, are unknown since 1980, although no mention is made of where the series was before this date.
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