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Oil painting 'The Fall of the Rebel Angels' 1562, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, on cover of 'Baroque Influencers', by Hannibal Books.

Baroque Influencers

Jesuits, Rubens, and the Arts of Persuasion

Edited by Pierre Delsaerdt
Edited by Esther Van Thielen


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  • This richly illustrated book accompanies the exhibition of the same name in the St Charles Borromeo Church, the Museum Snijders&Rockox House and the Hendrik Conscience Heritage Library in Antwerp from April to July 2023
  • The exhibition is part of the Baroque Influencers city festival
Full Description

In what ways did the Jesuits deploy the Baroque visual language of the time to persuade the public of their vision on humankind, religion and society? In this beautifully illustrated book, which includes numerous artworks by Peter Paul Rubens and others, diverse authors rise to the challenge of finding answers to this complex question.

The setting is Antwerp in the 17th century. At that time, the city was the Jesuit Order’s headquarters in the Netherlands and a bastion against the Calvinism in the Northern Netherlands Republic. The fine arts were flourishing there like never before. Painters such as Peter Paul Rubens and Anthony van Dyck produced works for the Jesuits and participated in the Catholic community life organised by the order, with large groups of fellow believers. This publication takes a close look at the Baroque Saint Ignatius Church, now the Saint Charles Borromeo Church on Hendrik Conscienceplein, for which Rubens created magnificent ceiling paintings. The authors also show how more modest forms of art, such as religious folk prints, illustrated lives of the saints, schoolbooks, emblemata books and prayer books, were used to kindle the enthusiasm of as many believers as possible, both in their own country and in distant overseas territories.

Baroque Influencers – Jesuits, Rubens and the Arts of Persuasion presents written contributions from researchers affiliated with the Universities of Antwerp, Louvain and Stuttgart and various heritage institutes.

Hannibal Books
22nd Jun 2023
World excluding Benelux, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, and Italy
280 mm x 230 mm
208 Pages
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