Information for the museum website, 27 January 2012
The Rockox House is proud to be hosting this ‘dossier exhibition’ from the Antwerp Royal Museum of Fine Arts which is currently closed for renovation.
In June 1638, Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand defeated the Dutch near Kallo (on the left bank of the Scheldt in Antwerp) and then, a few days later, he brought the French to their knees at St Omaars (now Saint-Omer). In commemoration of these events, Antwerp’s city council decided to add a ‘float’ in the annual Antwerp Ommegang or procession, and Rubens was commissioned to paint the ‘chariot’ to celebrate the first of the two victories.
The focus of this ‘dossier exhibition’ is the iconography of the ‘triumphal chariot’. Rubens’ image is compared to the tradition associated with that of earlier allegorical ‘triumphal chariots’.