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The Alchemist

  • 17th century
  • Mattheus van Helmont, Flemish
  • 22 1/2 in. W x 16 1/2 in. H
    Oil on canvas
  • On display in Transmutations
  • Gift of Roy Eddleman
  • Eddleman Collection
  • FA 2000.003.002
  • No known copyright restrictions

Description

A bearded, seated man facing three-quarters left, with glasses and bright red shirt, bends over an open book on a desk stacked high with a mess of books, papers, and glassware. The trail of books continues to the ground with broken and unbroken crockery, a large copper pan, and strands of straw. At the left middle ground two men work at a table; behind them a man stands by a large furnace and pours the contents from one vessel into another. In the right background are three men stand around a free-standing small furnace, heating a pot.

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