This colorful, fully signed panel is a typical work by Théobald Michau, a Flemish painter who was particularly skilled in the refined technique required for small-scale, jewel-like cabinet pictures, of which the present picture is a finely-preserved example. Michau's boisterous village scenes belong to a tradition that was popularized by David Teniers II (1610-1690), whose rustic imagery often featured the simple pleasures of a peasant lifestyle. Michau's limpid, atmospheric palette, on the other hand, owes more to the cool blue-green landscapes of Jan Breughel I, who revolutionized the genre in the early 17th century.
Michau was trained from a young age in Brussels, where he was a pupil of the landscape painter Lucas Achtschellinck and where he became a master at the local guild in 1698. In 1710 he became an independent master in Antwerp's Guild of Saint Luke, and sold at least ten paintings to Charles of Lorraine, Governor of the Low Countries, attesting to the enormous demand for Michau's work in 18th-century Flanders.