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Peter Paul Rubens, Portrait of a Man, possibly Peter van Hecke (1591-1645), c. 1630

This man is probably the Antwerp dealer Peter van Hecke, and his wife Clara Fourment is hanging on the right. They belonged to Rubens’ intimate family circle, as Clara Fourment was the elder sister of Rubens’ second wife Hélène. The couple clearly live in comfort, in view of their fashionable clothing of shiny black fabrics and fine lace collars.

Rubens was the leading Flemish painter of the seventeenth century. His flamboyant, baroque style influenced a whole generation of artists after him.

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