Peter Paul Rubens (detail)
Peter Paul Rubens (June 28, 1577 – May 30, 1640) was a prolific seventeenth-century Flemish Baroque painter, and a proponent of an exuberant Baroque style that emphasized movement, color, and sensuality. He is well-known for his Counter-Reformation altarpieces, portraits, landscapes, and history paintings of mythological and allegorical subjects.
In addition to running a large studio in Antwerp which produced paintings popular with nobility and art collectors throughout Europe, Rubens was a classically-educated humanist scholar, art collector, and diplomat who was knighted by both Philip IV, king of Spain, and Charles I, king of England.
The Cathedral of Our Lady (Dutch: Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekathedraal ten Hemel Opgenomen) is a Roman Catholic parish church in Antwerp, Belgium. The today's see of the Diocese of Antwerp was started in 1352 and, although the first stage of construction was ended in 1521, has never been 'completed'. In Gothic style, its architects were Jan and Pieter Appelmans. It contains a number of significant works by the Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens, as well as paintings by artists such as Otto van Veen, Jacob de Backer and Marten de Vos.
The Royal Museum of Fine Arts of Antwerp (Dutch: Koninklijk Museum voor Schone Kunsten van Antwerpen), founded in 1810, houses a collection of paintings, sculptures and drawings from the fourteenth to the twentieth centuries. This collection is representative of the artistic production and the taste of art enthusiasts in Antwerp, Belgium and the Northern and Southern Netherlands since the fifteenth century.
The neoclassical building housing the collection is one of the primary landmarks of the Zuid district of Antwerp, and stands in gardens bounded by the Leopold de Waalplaats, the Schildersstraat, the Plaatsnijdersstraat, and the Beeldhouwersstraat. It was completed in 1894.