In 2012 the Picture Gallery began a new series of small exhibitions entitled “Points of View”. Each showcases an unusual painting in the Picture Gallery that is either rarely displayed for lack of hanging space or that has been the focus of recent research.
Point of View #6 features „Dulle Griet“ (or mad Meg) by David Ryckaert (1612-1661). Painted around the 1650s, this virtuoso composition by the Flemish artist shows a witch-like old hag using her broom to put a veritable army of evil creatures to flight. Although frequently regarded and depicted as one, Dulle
Griet is, in fact, not a witch. In his painting Ryckaert features a fearless woman not even afraid to take on the devil. Gerlinde Gruber, the curator of Flemish Baroque Painting, looks both at Dulle Griet’s colourful role in Netherlandish art and culture – including how she reflects male fears – and Ryckaert’s engagement with the figure’s pictorial tradition, in which Pieter
Bruegel the elder played a seminal role.