The Resurrection of Christ Peter Paul Rubens Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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This vibrant triptych, one of the few to have come from Peter Paul Rubens' considerable career, was completed in 1611-1612 and contains all of the elements that made this artist one of the finest members of the Baroque art movement.

To take each of the three panels separately, the central piece, that is always the main focus of any triptych, concentrates on the subject title - namely the risen Jesus appearing from the tomb. That is, after all, the Resurrection itself. As the artist captures him in traditionally dramatic and animated Baroque style, complete with flashes of light to contrast him with the rest of the scene, the other figures cower in surprise and fear.

On the left hand panel is John the Baptist, whilst on the opposing wing of this triptych is Martina of Rome. Invariably, a painting put together with three panels like this will depict related scenes on each one, and then place the most significant element in the middle. Some triptychs will have hinges on each of the wings so that the piece can be closed, revealing a further artwork on the outside. That is not the case in this Rubens work.

The city of Antwerp played an important role in the Northern Renaissance and much of the art produced there during that time is still on display here. For example, the Resurrection of Christ triptych can now be found at the Cathedral of Our Lady, a fitting institution for such a breaktaking panel painting. This Cathedral was finished in 1521 after several stages of development that took nearly two centuries to complete. This was the norm for large scale buildings at that time right across Europe.

The Resurrection of Christ in Detail Peter Paul Rubens