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A house of art. Rubens as a collector

06.03.04 - 13.06.04

For quite a long time, collecting art was a privilege of kings and the clergy. From the sixteenth century onwards, however, wealthy art-loving citizens also started to collect art. During his lifetime, Rubens also amassed an impressive art collection.

You can see part of this collection in the Rubens House's "studiolo". But during the past four hundred years, many of these works changed hands. "A house of art. Rubens as a collector" was the first time that a large part of Rubens's valuable art collection was reunited again in the original location. In the master's home.



Besides masterpieces by some of the greatest Italian painters – Titian, Raphael, Tintoretto – and of some Antwerp contemporaries (including ten paintings by Rubens's talented pupil, Anthony Van Dyck) Rubens's collection also included a large number of antique sculptures and Roman antiquities. And a number of small ivories after a design by Rubens. And finally there was also a bust of the rhetorician Seneca. Which ultimately proved not to be Seneca. Rubens saw art as an investment, as well as representative of his status. At the same time, the collection was a source of knowledge and inspiration, for himself and his assistants.

This exhibition was the highlight of the prestigious exhibition project Rubens2004.

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