MOVING PICTURES

'The Harvesters' by Pieter Bruegel the Elder

Take a long, slow look at Bruegel's masterpiece, and listen along with BBC Radio 4's Cathy FitzGerald

When we look at this painting from a distance, it seems like a sleepy, pastoral scene. But would you believe that it features the daring escape of some thieves, a game involving the vicious torture of a goose, and even some naked monks?!

Come with us on a journey through Bruegel's masterpiece - digitized in super high-resolution Gigapixel - to explore the painting's magical details up close...

The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

A fine feast

In the foreground of the painting we can see a group of people who have stopped for a quick lunch break. But who are they and what's their story?

Detail from The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

A mysterious game

If we zoom in to the center of the painting, we find a group of villagers who seem to be playing a pretty strange game. Is that a... live goose?

Detail from The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

See the sea

You can almost feel the salty sea breeze coming in from the water on the horizon. But does it give us clues to where we are?

Detail from The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

The naked truth

In the middle distance we can see a small swimming hole in a shady grove. And what's that in the water...?

Detail from The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

Scurrying scrumpers

Spotted the fancy castle and its orchard in the top left? There's something shady about the people hiding in the shade...

Detail from The Harvesters, 1565, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

Discover the answers to these mysteries and continue your journey into Bruegel's masterpiece with BBC Radio 4's Moving Pictures series. Start the audio here, and click back to Google Arts & Culture to follow along as Cathy Fitzgerald narrates the painting with her expert guests.

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