The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
The Rainbow Landscape
  • Peter Paul Rubens (1577 - 1640)
  • The Rainbow Landscape
  • Flanders
  • c. 1636
  • Painting
  • Oil on oak panel
  • Image size: 135.6 x 235 cm
    Object size: 181 x 284 x 17.5 cm
  • P63
  • East Drawing Room
Commentary
History
Further Reading
  • In 1635 the fifty-eight year old Rubens bought the château of Het Steen, situated between Brussels and Antwerp. Soon afterwards he painted a view of the château (National Gallery, London) and this companion piece which shows the surrounding countryside. The two pictures celebrate Rubens’s deep love for the landscape of Brabant and are the greatest landscapes he painted. The Rainbow Landscape, however, is not a simple naturalistic record. Rather it recreates a vision of his native countryside in order to convey not just what he saw, but also what he thought and felt about the land and Man’s relationship to it. Thus the rainbow recalls the covenant made between God and Man after the Flood and the harvest can be seen as Man’s just reward for his labours.