CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

‘Equal to the Great Masters’: Landscapes by Gainsborough and Rubens (Rubens Talk Series)

Online event: 7 July 2021

Date: Wednesday 7 July 2021
Times: 19:00 to 20:00 BST, and available to view for one week thereafter
Location: Zoom Webinar (Online)
Speaker: Dr John Chu, Senior Curator of Pictures and Sculpture, The National Trust

Talk Description: Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) had a lifelong love of Netherlandish landscape art. As his career developed so too did the range and depth of his appreciation for the ‘Great Masters’ of the Low Countries – prominent in this pantheon was Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640). In this talk, John Chu will consider the transformative influence of Rubens’s landscapes on Gainsborough’s art, examining what he learned from his predecessor and why these paintings became such an important model. Looking more broadly, he will also explore the reputation of Rubens’s landscapes in 18th-century Britain and establish the social and artistic conditions that shaped, and made possible, Gainsborough’s fruitful encounter with the works of the Flemish master.

About the Speaker: Dr John Chu is Senior Curator of Pictures and Sculpture at the National Trust. He has taught and published widely on 18th-century British and French painting and specialises in the art of Thomas Gainsborough and Joshua Reynolds.

Rubens Talk Series, 9 June to 21 July: To accompany the Wallace Collection’s new exhibition, Rubens: Reuniting the Great Landscapes, this series of seven evening talks will explore different aspects of Rubens’s extraordinary life and achievements, the fascinating social, cultural and economic circumstances of his age, and his enduring artistic legacy.

For more information and to register, see

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