From 17 September 2011 to 15 June 2012, the Hermitage Amsterdam will present a stunning selection from the Flemish art collection of the St. Petersburg Hermitage. With 75 paintings and about 20 drawings, this definitive survey will include many masterpieces by the three giants of the Antwerp School, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, and Jacob Jordaens, supplemented by the work of well-known contemporaries. One of the highlights will be Rubens’s famous Descent from the Cross. This will be the first exhibition of this superb collection in the Netherlands. Many of the paintings to be shown were acquired by Catherine the Great in the eighteenth century; Catherine purchased first-rate collections, such as those of Crozat and Brühl, in their entirety. Originally, many of the paintings were on display in churches, convents, and monasteries in Antwerp and other European cities. The exhibition will offer a close look at Flemish art and the history and the history of the Flemish art collection at the St. Petersburg Hermitage.
Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640) will be a special focus of the exhibition, represented by 17 paintings and many drawings. Rubens was the most accomplished and influential Flemish painter of the seventeenth century. At the same time, he was known as a charming nobleman, diplomat, and collector, and his workshop was a well-run business. He was a legend in his day, a homo universalis. Both Rubens’s religious and his secular works illustrate his unequalled talent. The exhibition will also devote substantial attention to his influence and followers. For instance, a place of honour is reserved for the portraits painted for the English court by Anthony van Dyck. Impressive history paintings by Jacob Jordaens, still lifes by Frans Snijders, and genre pieces by David Teniers the Younger will also be displayed in their full glory. The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue with essays by Russian and Flemish authors.
Rubens, Van Dyck & Jordaens: Flemish paintings from the Hermitage
Ben van Beneden, Natalja Gritsaj, Natalja Babina and Aleksej Larionov