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Peter Paul Rubens

Siegen 1577 - Antwerpen 1640

The Antwerp painter Peter Paul Rubens was appointed court artist to the Duke of Mantua in Italy at a young age. In 1603 he travelled to Madrid, where he was able to see the paintings of Titian and Raphael in the Spanish court. He subsequently travelled between 1604 and 1608 to Mantua, Rome, Genoa and Milan. He mainly studied the painters Titian and Michelangelo, and was very impressed by the work of Caravaggio, from whom he purchased a canvas. After returning to Antwerp, he worked until his death as court artist to the Spanish regents of the Netherlands. He built a house in Antwerp based on Italian villas, and started a flourishing studio. Countless artists, including such celebrities as Anthonie van Dijck and Jacob Jordaens, were trained in his studio. Rubens left much work to his assistants, but carefully oversaw everything. He was one of the most influential painters of his time and the greatest exponent of the Baroque in the north.

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