The Rubenshuis ('Rubens House') is the former home and studio of Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640) in Antwerp. It is now a museum.

A year after marrying Isabella Brant in 1609, Rubens began construction on an Italian-style villa at the time located at the banks of the canal Herentalse Vaart. Rubens designed the building himself, based on studies of Italian Renaissance palace architecture that also formed the basis of his Palazzi di Genova. The layout included his home, studio, a monumental portico and an interior courtyard. The courtyard opens into a Baroque garden that he also planned.

In the adjacent studio he and his students executed many of the works for which Rubens is famous. He had established a well-organised workshop that met the demands of his active studio, including large commissions from England, France, Spain and Bavaria and other locations. He relied on students and collaborators for much of the actual work. Rubens himself, however, guaranteed the quality and often finished paintings with his own hand. In a separate private studio he made drawings, portraits and small paintings without the assistance of his students and collaborators.

Rubens spent most of his lifetime in this palace. After his death, his wife Helena Fourment rented the building to William Cavendish and his wife. After the Cavendishes left in 1660, the house was sold.

The city bought the house in 1937, and after an extensive restoration the Rubenshuis was opened to the public in 1946. Dozens of paintings and artworks by Rubens and his contemporaries were installed in the rooms, as well as period furniture. Paintings include his early Adam and Eve (c. 1600) and a self portrait made when he was about fifty.

The Rubenianum, a centre dedicated to the study of Rubens, is in a building at the rear of the garden.

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Address

Wapper, Antwerp, Belgium
See all sites in Antwerp

Details

Founded: 1609
Category: Museums in Belgium

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Gomathy Natarajan (3 years ago)
The massacre of the innocents - the most valuable Rubens painting ever is displayed here till 3rd March 2019. The house contains various artifacts and still life paintings belonging to Rubens era. This place is where he lived with his family and drew many paintings with his colleagues and assistants. One of the only 4 self portraits of Rubens is displayed here. The garden and the courtyard and currently in restoration process.
Fabio Diglio (3 years ago)
Rubenshuis is the former house of the Flemish artist Rubens. The Palazzo was designed by Rubens himself as both a place to live and a studio. In 1937, the city of Antwerp acquired the house and turned it, after a nine year restoration, into a museum. Today entering the Rubens’ House gives you the chance to step into the master's world as the museum has an interesting collection but it also shows how he lived and worked.
Clemence P. (3 years ago)
This is a great museum as it is literally Rubens House which means that it is a dynamic learning experience, as you go through different rooms you get to see different paintings and the stories behind them. The staff provides a numbered booklet which refers to the paintings, so when you want to learn about a painting all you have to do is look for the corresponding number in the booklet.
Pepijn Aghina (4 years ago)
A must see when in Antwerp. Beautiful interior which shows at least an insight into the wealth Rubens had in his lifetime. Also intriguing to see how the well-to-do lived in that period. The art that is on exposé has some unique pieces, that play with contrast. All in all I think this is a sight you mustn't miss. For entrance there is a fee required. Tickets available in the office in front of the house.
Olivia Price (4 years ago)
Really great explanation of all the art, and the path described in the info booklet makes sure you see and learn about the best art. If you're into Rubens and still life in general, I think it would be an amazing experience, but the 4 stars is because its a pretty small museum for 10 euros. Not a must-see, but a good experience if you're in the area.
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