This work reproduces a painting by Wijck in the collections of the Rijksmuseum. The alchemist, seated at his desk before the window, looks down to survey the progress of his assistant. The young boy holds up a basin for his approval. At the assistant's feet sit a large mortar and pestle, assorted papers and colored powders. The room is both domestic space and workshop: a seated woman engaged in mending sits by the hearth, while another young boy feeds the fire. The work's warm tone and orderly domesticity suggest a productive and harmonious home.
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