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Published on : Wednesday, February 6, 2013
From 2 February 2013 visitors to the Rockox House in Antwerp will be able to see how an Antwerp art collection must have appeared in the Golden Century. More particularly, the residence of burgomaster and patron Nicolaas Rockox (1560–1640) is being transformed into a luxurious art cabinet with top items from Antwerp’s Royal Museum of Fine Arts (closed for renovation) and the most important works from the Rockox House itself. On display will be a range of fine paintings by such masters as Van der Weyden, Memling, Van Eyck, Rubens and Van Dyck.
During the later part of the sixteenth century and the early part of the seventeenth, the Scheldt city of Antwerp enjoyed an especially favourable artistic and economic climate that made it the prime production and trading centre for luxury articles. It was a time when many patricians and merchants built up rich collections of contemporary and ancient art, though the majority of those collections have come to be dispersed in the course of time.