This is a complete presentation on artist Peter Paul Rubens from Baroque Art History. THERE ARE MANY ACTUAL SLIDES FOR YOUR REVIEW IN THE PREVIEW. THIS IS YOUR BEST INDICATION OF PRODUCT QUALITY.
Rubens has never been universally adored. His chief criticism is for being over the top. He’s called overly dramatic, operatic, plus filled with hyperbole. Some refer to his work as Baroque fireworks. They point to tiger-hunters eaten alive by their prey as just one example.
19th-century American painter and educator Thomas Eakins, said, “Rubens was the nastiest, most vulgar, noisy painter that ever lived… His pictures always put me in mind of chamber pots.” The painter Ingres recommended viewing Rubens’s paintings through horse blinkers.
Artist Jenny Saville curated a room of modern and contemporary works as part of the blockbuster exhibition “Rubens and his Legacy, Van Dyck to Cézanne.” These are painters who carried on Rubens’ work via their own art.
Jenny Saville: “When you discuss Rubens, you’re talking about somebody who was making art before film and photography, at a time when the Church was paying artists to promote the Counter Reformation. Rubens was commissioned to put religious subjects in his paintings, but now we’ve taken all those subjects out because God doesn’t exist for many artists any more. What exists is our nature and the nature of painting, which has dominated artists’ thoughts since the 1940s or ’50s, basically since Pollock declared, ‘I am nature’. The game has changed for painters, so you’ve got to consider what Rubens’s game was at that time – it wasn’t as empty as it is now.”
Jenny Saville: “Even if you as a viewer don’t like all of Rubens, you may like what Rubens helped other artists to do.”
Question: Why is Rubens not as as popular as Rembrandt?
Jenny Saville: “It is because he shows everything. It’s like having ice cream and fruit and too many toppings all at the same time.”