Painting Human Flesh: Theory Compared to Jacob Jordaens’ Practice

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This paper will discuss the development and technique of painting flesh in a number of works by Jacob Jordaens (1593–1678), a highly successful Antwerp painter greatly influenced by Peter Paul Rubens. Jordaens relied heavily on Rubens in his formative years until around 1618, and on the experience that Rubens brought to Antwerp from Italy after working for aristocratic patrons in Mantua, Rome and other Italian cities (fig. 1). While Irene Schaudies in her essay for this volume focuses on the influence of Rubens’ models on Jordaens’ Bacchic figures, this essay shall attempt to demonstrate how Jordaens, later in his long career, structured his layers of flesh paints in a very different and somewhat less economical way compared to Rubens. The question of the extent to which Jordaens modelled his own treatment of human flesh on Rubens’ influence will be investigated in the context of contemporary written source material on the visual representation of flesh.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRubens and the Human Body
EditorsCordula van Wyhe
Number of pages26
Place of PublicationTurnhout
PublisherBrepols Publishers
Publication dateJun 2018
Commissioning bodyUniversity of York
ISBN (Print)978-2-503-57775-3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018
EventRubens and the Human Body - University of York, York, United Kingdom
Duration: 17 Sep 201018 Sep 2010


ConferenceRubens and the Human Body
LocationUniversity of York
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address
SeriesThe Body in Art (BIA)

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