In the summer of 2022, the Rubens Chapel in St. James’ Church will close due to a large scale renovation. After almost 400 years, Rubens’ painting Madonna Surrounded by Saints will be moved to KIK-IRPA for restoration. The chapel is expected to reopen in 2024.
The Gothic Sint-Jacobskerk (St. James’s Church) in Antwerp is a time capsule from the seventeenth century. Many artists and scholars found their last resting place in the church, including Peter Paul Rubens and his wife Helena Fourment, Artus Quellinus (II), Godfried Maes, and Michiel Coignet. The district in which the church is situated was home to many famous Antwerp artists, which is represented in the art collection of the church.
Highlights are the pulpit by Lodewijk Willemsen, an early sixteenth-century series of panel paintings depicting the legend of St. Rochus by Heynderick van Wueluwe, Rubens’s altar for his burial chapel and paintings by Michiel Coxie, Jacques Jordaens, and Gerard Seghers.. Other sculptures and paintings in the Sint-Jacobskerk are by Pieter (II) and Hendrik Frans Verbruggen, Willem Ignatius Kerrickx, Hendrik I van Balen, Erasmus (II) and Jan Erasmus Quellinus, Deodat van der Mont, Theodor Boeijermans, Jan Massijs, Ambrosius Francken (I), Jan van Hemessen, Frans Floris, and Otto van Veen.
The Chapel of Mary and the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament contain seventeenth-century stained glass windows by Jan de. An exceptional collection of silverware and textiles is on display in the church’s treasury.
Dr. Jean-Pierre Désiré De Bruyn, Curator (December 2021)