CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Vlaamse pracht uit de 16e en 17e eeuw: Rijksmuseum aan de Maas

Flemish splendour of the 16th and 17th centuries: the Rijksmuseum in Maastricht Exhibition: 2 March 2004 - 31 December 2008


Rijksmuseum aan de Maas has been continued in a new exhibition: Rijksmuseum Maastricht, een selectie van Zuid Nederlandse schilder en beeldhouwkunst, ca. 1480-1620

From the exhibition website

From 2 March 2004, the rooms of the Bonnefantenmuseum will be resplendent with the very best of Flemish art of the 16th and 17th centuries from the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. Following the small prologue in June 1999, and the first large display of Flemish art from the National treasury in March 2002 entitled The Rijksmuseum in Maastricht, the Bonnefantenmuseum can now show off around fifty ‘new’ paintings, including work by ‘the big three of Flemish painting’: Rubens, Jordaens and Van Dyck. These form the core of the long-term loan – a unique mobile sample of the collection from the Rijksmuseum during its renovation – in which the addition to the existing presentation of glass roundels and façon de Venise glass is also well worth a visit.

On display will be two portraits by Anthony van Dyck, as well as Peter Paul Rubens’ monumental Cimon and Pero, and his beautiful oil sketch of Christ Bearing the Cross. However, the indisputable grand master is Jacob Jordaens. His Ferry to Antwerp already has a central place in the Bonnefanten, but now this artist’s work will be represented by a further five crucial paintings, among them three monumental portraits the Rijksmuseum recently acquired.

The 16th-century department in Maastricht will be completely re-hung with major works, such as Joachim Beuckelaer’s Kitchen Scene with Christ in the House of Mary and Martha, from 1566, a huge panel of one meter seventy by two and a half metres, which has never been on loan before. Beuckelaer will be flanked by at least three important works by Pieter Aertsen, including the very last painting he did. Highly important is the presence of Jan van Hemessen’s painting Allegory of Nature, through which the Renaissance will gain much more prominence in the Bonnefantenmuseum, aided by the loan of two other works; Adriaen Isenbrant’s Virgin and child in a Niche and Jan Cornelisz Vermeyen’s Marriage at Cana. This last painting is a candlelit tableau by the great Renaissance painter of the Netherlands, who was court painter to Margaret of Austria. He is particularly renowned for his portraits, as demonstrated by the painting already in the Bonnefantenmuseum of Érard de la Marck, prince bishop of Liège.

The augmentation of the 17th-century department is just as spectacular, with important acquisitions for the landscape painting section; the large, spectacular Panorama Landscape with Wild Boar Hunt, by Joos de Momper, and the subtle Mountain Landscape, by Lucas van Valckenborch, as well as additional works by Jan Brueghel de Oude and Willem van Nieulandt. There are wonderful still lifes by Jan Brueghel, Jan van Kessel and Ambrosius Bosschaert, and also genre paintings by Adriaen Brouwer, David Teniers and David Vinckboons. Besides showing this imposing collection of paintings, as part of the Rijksmuseum in Maastricht project the Bonnefantenmuseum will also be adding to its collection of façon de Venise glass and bringing a further eleven glass roundels to Maastricht, by Pieter Coecke van Aelst and Dirck Jacobsz Vellert, the famous glazier of Antwerp and friend of Albrecht Dürer.

Bonnefantenmuseum the Dutch port of call for Flemish art of the 16th and 17th centuries

The ‘Flemings’ get a structural place in the Bonnefantenmuseum in the wing: ‘Rijksmuseum in Maastricht’. This means that the presentation is not an exhibition in the usual sense of the word, as it concerns a long-term loan. Even after the re-opening of the new Rijksmuseum, the story of the history of Flemish art will remain on display. This wonderful initiative gathers together the best paintings from the Southern Netherlands from the collections of the Rijksmuseum and the Bonnefantenmuseum, and also includes several works from the Museum Catharijneconvent, Frans Halsmuseum, the Spanish Government and the Dutch state.