[[caption-width-right:255:The master of baroque painting.]]
Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) was a 16th-17th century Flemish painter, widely praised for his rich and warm, colorful paintings. Back in his time he was one of the most popular, richest and celebrated European painters, working for several royal courts.
His work depicts Biblical, historical and mythological subjects. Rubens also made portraits of his friends, family members and himself. Rubens was one of the few historical painters who became rich with his work. Some of his assistants and pupils later became famous painters in their own right, like Anthony Van Dyck, David Teniers and Jacob Jordaens.
Not to be confused with American actor Creator/PaulReubens.
!!This artist provides examples of:
* AdamAndEvePlot: He painted a famous portrait of them.
* AnachronismStew: Done intentionally for effect. While many of Rubens's paintings depict events from Literature/TheBible or Myth/ClassicalMythology, they take place in landscapes clearly defined by early modern reality, with characters dressed in clothing and carrying weapons from the 17th century.
* ActuallyThatsMyAssistant: Rubens had a lot of assistants who helped him during painting and so it's often difficult to tell which (parts of his) paintings were made by himself?
* AsTheGoodBookSays: Like every painter in his time Rubens painted a lot of biblical themes, though always taking place in his own lifetime: "Literature/SamsonAndDelilah", "The Elevation of the Cross", "Adam and Eve", "The Massacre Of The Innocents",...
* BadassMoustache and BadassBeard: He had a curly moustache and goatee that make him look very stylish.
* BigBeautifulWoman: Rubens is well known for featuring nude chubby and fat women, true to the beauty ideal of his time.
* CoolHat: Rubens usually wears a large hat in his self-portraits.
* FamilyMan: Made a lot of paintings of himself and his children.
* JudgementOfParis: He painted three different versions of this story.
* MachoMasochism: The painting ''Mucius Scaevola Before Porsenna'' shows Mucius Scaevola holding his hand in fire.
* MistakenNationality: Rubens is practically a symbol of the city Antwerp. His statue can be seen on the ''Groenplaats'' (''Green Place'') and his house is still a tourist attraction. Yet he was actually born in Siegen, Germany.
* PersonAsVerb: The adjective "Rubenesque" used to refer to a BigBeautifulWoman gets its etymology from his nudes of large women.
** Despite painting more versatile subjects besides full-figured women he is mostly remembered for these types of paintings.
** In Japan Rubens is famous for being an important plot point in the novel ''Literature/ADogOfFlanders''. Most Japanese tourists who visit Belgium will go to the Antwerp Cathedral to see Rubens' paintings as protagonist Nello and Patrasche do in the book.
* RenaissanceMan: In addition to being an acclaimed painter and draughtsman, Rubens was also a spy and a diplomat who served the infanta Isabella of the Spanish Netherlands and Philip IV of Spain. He was knighted by Philip IV and Charles I of England.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Rubens made a lot of portraits of himself, his wife and children.
** ''ComicBook/SuskeEnWiske'': He played an important role in the albums "De Raap van Rubens" and "De Krimson Crisis". In ''Het Dreigende Dinges'' the story ''Literature/ADogOfFlanders'' is used as a source for the plot, thus also bringing Rubens' ''Descent From The Cross'' back.
** ''ComicBook/DeKiekeboes'': In ''Hotel O'' the hotel manager advises the big breasted lady to try the ''Rubens suite''.
** The Antwerp window painter ''Rubbes'' was named after him.
* RiddleForTheAges: Some scenes are still a mystery to art historians.
* RuleOfSymbolism: As with most art of his time symbolism is rampant.
* SharpDressedMan: On his paintings, naturally.
* SmallReferencePools: In Flanders he and Creator/PieterBruegelTheElder are practically ''THE'' most famous Flemish painters of all time among the general public.