Exhibition - At the moment
The Snyders&Rockox House Museum presents :
Jan Brueghel I (1568–1625)
A magnificent Draughtsman
5 October 2019 to 26 January 2020
In 2019, we are looking back in Flanders and in Brussels at the crucial role that Pieter Bruegel the Elder played in the art-historical landscape of the sixteenth century. The 450th anniversary of his death is a good moment at which to rediscover the work of Jan Brueghel the Elder.
The Snyders&Rockox House is therefore taking a closer look at the drawings of Jan Brueghel I (1568–1625), son of Pieter Bruegel the Elder and brother of Pieter the Younger. Together with Peter Paul Rubens, Jan was one of the most successful Flemish artists of the first quarter of the seventeenth century. He was at home in every market – an inspired painter of landscapes, seascapes, still lifes, historical themes, hunting scenes and allegorical and mythological subjects. Jan is seen as the inventor of the floral still, but he was also an important innovator in the depiction of landscapes, in which his father’s artistic legacy and his visit to Italy played no small part.
The art of painting is underpinned by that of drawing, by which the artist’s talent and creativity can be measured. No previous exhibition has been dedicated solely to the drawn oeuvre of Jan Brueghel I. This major event is curated by Jan Brueghel scholars Dr Teréz Gerszi and Dr Louisa Wood Ruby, supported by Bernadett Tóth.
The exhibition will feature some fifty drawings and several paintings, loaned by leading institutions like the Louvre, Rijksmuseum and British Museum.
©Antwerpen, Museum Plantin Moretus-Prentenkabinet
Family reunion at the Snyders&Rockox House
Adriaen and Catherine Rockox visit their grandson Nicolaas with their thirteen children.
St James’s Church in Antwerp is lending the celebrated Van Hemessen Triptych to the Snyders&Rockox House for several years
The City of Antwerp, with the support of the Flanders Heritage Agency, is about to start work on restoring St James’s Church (Sint-Jacobskerk). The project will take about ten years to complete in all, with two principal phases. During the first of these, the church will close the nave and aisles in mid-January 2019, while the transept, choir and ambulatory chapels will remain open. As a result, several important altars and artworks will no longer be accessible to the public, including The Last Judgement or Rockox Triptych by Jan van Hemessen (Hemiksem, c. 1500–1556/57). For the next five years or so, the imposing work will be hosted at the Snyders&Rockox House Museum.
Adriaen Rockox (1460–1540), chamberlain to Emperor Charles, and Catherine van Overhoff (1486–1549), related to the Lords of Breda and the aristocratic Liere family, enjoyed considerable prestige in Antwerp. They lived in Keizerstraat, where they owned various buildings. In 1515, Adriaen and Catherine purchased the Chapel of St Dymphna in St James’s Church as their future burial place. Twenty years later they commissioned a triptych from Jan van Hemessen, the central panel of which shows the Last Judgement. The couple appear in the side panels, accompanied by their thirteen children. Catherine and their ten daughters are shown on the right, with Adriaen on the left with their three sons, including Adriaen Jr., the father of Nicolaas Rockox, our former burgomaster.
The Snijders&Rockox House.
Nicolaas Rockox and Frans Snijders were key figures in Antwerp during the Baroque era. Each made his mark on the city’s cultural and social life – Nicolaas as burgomaster and Frans as a brilliant painter of animals and still lifes. They were also next-door neighbours for 20 years in Keizerstraat.
Their original homes, now carefully restored, both belong to KBC, which opened the Rockox House as a museum some years ago and is now doing the same with the Snijders House. The everyday world of 17th-century citizens will be evoked through items from the museum’s own collection, supplemented by loans from museums and private collections in Belgium and abroad.
We will be able to view Nicolaas and Frans’s domestic environment through their own eyes, along with the making and promotion of art, collecting and display, markets and richly set tables, nature and gardens, and the humanist and the average citizen in the turbulent era in which they lived.