Anthony Van Dyck
(1599 - 1641)
Anthony Van Dyck was active/lived in Belgium, England. Anthony Van Dyck is known for court portrait and religious painting, etching.
Anthony Van Dyck
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Biography from the Archives of askART
A portrait and religious-subject painter and etcher from Belgium who
spent much of his career in England, Anthony Van Dyck was born in
Antwerp. His talent was recognized early, as he signed his first
portrait in 1616 when he was seventeen years old. He became the
favorite student and studio assistant to Peter Paul Rubens, and learned
to imitate his style to the point that there was confusion as to which
man painted some of the portraits.
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When he was twenty-one, in 1620, Van Dyck first went to England to do
court portraits, but was there for a short time because he never got
the introduction he sought from King James I. So he spent
most of the next seven years in Genoa, where he did religious subject
paintings and studied work of the Italian masters, especially
Titian. In 1627, he went back to Antwerp, and continued doing
religious paintings as well as portraits, reportedly being charming in
a way that brought many commissions. He also did a series of
etchings, described as "brilliant psychological portraits of
contemporary poets and artists."
As he matured and developed his own style, he did paintings that became
more moderate in color and style. In 1632, at age 33, he returned
to England, invited by King Charles I who had heard of his
distinguished reputation in Belgium and appointed him Court
Painter. Excepting brief visits to France and Belgium, Van Dyck
stayed there the remainder of his life, which was nine years,
completing over 350 portraits. "These distinguished portraits of an
elegant and almost unreal court became the model for later English
portrait painters of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and
influenced a vast number of European artists including Gainsborough,
Watteau, and Renoir." (barewalls.com)
He was knighted so that his titled became Sir Anthony Van Dyck, and
earned a considerable pension. He married the daughter of Lord
Ruthven and was relatively leisurely in his last years, applying
finishing touches to paintings but not completing the entire
He died in London and was buried in St. Paul's Cathedral.
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