In the Hermitage opens exhibition Jacob Jordaens, the famous Flemish, referred to as the "bean king"

In the Hermitage opens exhibition Jacob Jordaens, the famous Flemish, referred to as the "bean king"
28 February 2019, Thursday
The Art Newspaper Russia

Jacob Jordaens is considered to be the main artist after Anthropen Rubens and the whole Flemish Baroque.


The Hermitage displays its corpus by Jacob Jordaens (1593–1678) of eight paintings and two works from the artist’s workshop. They are supplemented by three more from the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts. Pushkin and canvases from the museums of Ekaterinburg, Nizhny Novgorod and Perm.


The main masterpieces are the Hermitage "The Bean King" (1638) and "Self-portrait with parents, brothers and sisters" (1615). In the earlier picture, the 22-year-old Jordaens portrayed nine close relatives and himself (on the left flank). The picture came to the Hermitage as part of the collection of Robert Walpole bought by Catherine II and was considered a portrait of Peter Paul Rubens and his family. But the coincidence - eight children - is purely quantitative, with Rubens they were from two wives. The handwritten catalog of the Hermitage in 1797 is correct: “The Jordaens family”, but this version was finally recognized in the middle of the twentieth century.


After 23 years, the artist again depicts relatives, but in a complex allegorical composition. On the Day of the Three Magi (January 6) a cake was prepared in Flanders, on which a bean was baked. The one who was lucky to get a piece with him, was declared the king of the holiday. Provident Jordaens made King Adam van Norte, his teacher and father-in-law, and the queen - his daughter Elizabeth. Do not forget the artist himself. Now this is not a modest young man with a dreamy view of the world, but a mature husband in the center of the picture with a cup in his highly raised hand. In short, life is good!


The late “Portrait of an Old Man”, depicting a burgher against a background of red drapery and ancient architecture, is all on the same theme of prosperity. "Family Portrait" - a tribute to fashion in the image of customers in the form of ancient gods.


The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts sent three pictures: "Satyr visiting the peasant" (c. 1622), "Odyssey in the cave of Polyphemus" (c. 1635) and "Running into Egypt" (1640). Vote for the brave Odyssey: Jordaens' picture has become a popular illustration of the ancient myth.


The State Hermitage
March 2 - May 26, 2019

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