Results 1-8of 8 Reviews
Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
December 13, 2012
Belgium small but great,
A must when in Europe
by Mandan Lynn
Smithwick, South Dakota
November 13, 2006
I love Peter Paul Rubens. This museum is the whole reason I visited Antwerp. The Rubenshuis was indeed Ruben's House. He lived there. It now includes much of his own artwork as well as the works of others. The highlights, for me, were The Annunciation and Adam and Eve in Paradise.You can also see works by Anthony Van Dyck and Jan Breughel. Right now, the special exhibit is of William and Margaret Cavendish. You're given a booklet when you buy your ticket that offers a brief description of each piece in the exhibit -- which includes pieces of jewelry, letters, and sculptures as well as paintings. It ends up being quite a history lesson on this couple, who spent some time in Rubens' home.Overall, I was actually a bit disappointed. I expected to see even more works by Rubens, my favorite artist. The Cavendish display was very interesting, but I would have rather spent my time looking at the art of Rubens. But it's still worthwhile. If you like Rubens even half as much as I do, pay a visit.
Rubens HuisTuesday-Sunday 10am-5pmAdults: €6 (students: €4)* Prices change during special exhibitions -- when I visited the museum, adults were €7 and students were €5.
From journal Belgium: Waffles, Chocolate and More!
April 8, 2004
One enters the older north section of the house, which served as the living quarters for Rubens and his family. He added the art room, with a design based on the revered Pantheon in Rome, to display antique sculptures and to flaunt his ascending status as a famous artist and wealthy citizen. The pleasingly dark rooms are decorated with tiers of artworks by Rubens and other contemporary artists. Many of the displayed works are specially imported for the current 2004 exhibit. The hordes of visitors are quite considerable during this feature year of Rubens, so be prepared for some artistically claustrophobic moments in crowded hallways and old stairways.
Then wander into the newer south studio section, which was based after designs by Rubens. He had resided in Italy for about eight years, and this design reflected his newfound tastes for Italianate palazzos. It has a lavish Baroque exterior, which contrasts and even overwhelms the more typical Flemish brick facade next door. The two parts definitely look like distinct entities, although Rubens did not wish to seek a completely unified appearance. Walk through the former studio workshop space, from the ground level and the gallery level above. Needless to say, the studio is two levels high so that it could accommodate many of his grandly scaled canvases.
Do not forget to walk through the courtyard garden once you leave the interiors of Rubenshuis. You will pass through the mannerist three-arched portico, which was used as an artistic backdrop in some of Rubens’ works. The garden facades of the Baroque block are studded with a multitude of robust sculptures and reliefs, an effect that overwhelms the intrinsically quiet nature of the older Flemish exteriors and the peaceful garden.
From journal Bill in Belgium - ANTWERP
Todmorden, England, United Kingdom
September 26, 2003
The virtue of this building is of a house typical of the wealthy citizen's home of the early 17th century, with the furniture and artifacts to match.
The entrance price entitles you to borrow earphones (which of course can be programmed to English) which let you hear a commentary on the garden, the house, the artwork, and the furniture. I thought it had terrific value as a museum rather than as an art gallery.
From journal 'appy in Antwerp
June 20, 2003
Your visit begins across the street, where you purchase your ticket and get your audio guide. The store is in an adjacent building also across the street. Carefully cross the street and pass through the classical portico to the gardens. This is where the audio tour begins. This is also the only area where photography is allowed. The pavilion in the garden dates from Rubens’ time, but the actual layout of the garden can only be guessed.
You will pass through several rooms recreating what typical Flemish homes of the early 17th century would have been like. The kitchen has a large open fireplace and tiled walls. Superb paintings are hung throughout these rooms. The self-portrait in the dining room is particularly worthy of a look. It is one of only a few self-portraits he painted, and as usual, he is not portrayed as an artist but as a successful businessman. In Rubens' time, this house would have been a home, academy, museum, pleasure gallery, and the workshop where art was produced.
Rubens was influenced by the Italian collectors; he somewhat imitated their style, but he also bought art as an investment and he often bought from young artists he liked. His collection was a very important part of his life; we know this from the inventory of his estate and from his extensive correspondence. Some of the oil sketches he owned are very rare today because the original works have been lost. Many of his contemporaries would have visited his home to view his collection and the art. This was a constantly changing collection that covered a wide range of subjects and mediums. There is a temple to hold his sculpture collection, with the classical art being in a classical setting.
You will pass through bedrooms with very nice pieces of Flemish furniture. After Rubens’ death, the furniture in his house was sold, so what you see is not original to the house, but it is from the correct time period. In one, you will see paintings of his grandparents Bartholomeus Rubens and Barbara Arents. This was probably the most amazing thing in the house to me, to actually have portraits from the 16th century of his family.
The tour finishes in the workshop, where there are several very fine paintings by Rubens and some of his very talented students. Rubens was certainly one of the most prolific painters ever; it explains why any museum worth its salt has a Rubens. More than 2,500 works were produced in over 40 years in this workshop.
From journal Antwerp-The Flemish Gem
, West Virginia
December 26, 2002
The painter was rich and a man of his times, and so surrounded himself with artistic treasures attesting to the triumph of the human mind and spirit: busts of Seneca and other real persons, inscribed citations of the poet Juvenal, a collection of books, and others’ paintings of Flemish personages. But these testimonials to human greatness share spaces with gods and satyrs, revealing that 17th-century humanism was incomplete.
A visit is worthwhile even for one collection: statuary. Rubens owned over 90 pieces! Figures top the arched entrance to the courtyard and grace the garden pavilion, where Bacchus, Venus, and other gods of plenty oversee the harvest of fruit trees and grapevines. Inside, the statuary museum is a rotunda room Rubens patterned after the Roman Pantheon. Outside, insets in stone walls provide more displays. Information on many individual pieces are numbered on the audio tour, which is free with the entrance fee.
Every room is decorated with oils on canvas: in the dining room, Self-portrait of Rubens as diplomat; in the painter’s studio, the larger masterpieces, The Annunciation and Adam and Eve. The Gallery and rooms display works by others: Jan Brueghel’s Archdukes Albrecht in the park, van Leyden’s Christmas Night, and Jacob Jordaens’s Presentation in the Temple. We stopped a while in front of these and still finished the house in 1.5 hours.
Aside from the collections, the furniture is notable, though nothing but one chair belonged to Rubens. We were assured by guides (present to answer questions) that the furniture was similar to what Rubens owned, but were still struck by how much of history becomes uncertain so quickly. Antwerp in the painter’s day was famous for producing fine cabinetry, and many samples here are exquisite baroque presentations with inlaid ivory and gilt trimmings. Satisfied that the reconstructed scene was true to the master’s original surroundings, we envisioned him on the balcony over his studio, perhaps calling out some instruction to an understudy. If this were not true enough, we saw proof of his influence--balustraded balconies, rotunda roofs, inset statuary, and columned porticos--repeated throughout the old city center.
From journal A Day with Rubens in Antwerp
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
June 29, 2002
From journal Antwerp, not just a diamond city
Teaneck, New Jersey
July 1, 2001
This is the house where Peter Paul Rubens lived and it is full of wonderful paintings, furniture, statuary and decorative touches that illustrate the period in which he worked (16th-17th century I think, not sure of the exact dates) The house holds works by a number of Flemish masters and is easily navigable in under an hour. Setting off the premises are lovely gardens where gorgeous blooms compete with sculpure and the beauty of the dwelling for your attention. An added attraction is the location, just off the pedestrian mall, the Meir, and surrounded by shops and restaurants. Well worth the visit and sure to lodge in the best memories of your trip.
From journal Antwerp on the Run