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From January 25 to February 15, 2023

University Museum
of Navarra



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Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) is a gigantic figure, which invites hyperbole. The author of an abundant production, he was the most successful painter of his time in Europe. Although he worked primarily in Antwerp, he lived for a long period of time in Italy and also received commissions from the courts of Spain, France and England, as well as from other princes and prominent people. He was fluent in at least five languages and was a profound connoisseur of the culture of Antiquity, about which he wrote extensively. Cosmopolitan in character, he once claimed to be at home everywhere. These qualities led him to work also as a diplomat in the service of the Spanish monarchy, of which the southern Netherlands was a part. His correspondence shows that he approached this work as a search for peace for Europe. That same correspondence, together with his paintings, sample us a personality in which a stoic attitude is paradoxically combined with an epicurean one.

As a painter, his main ambition was to recreate the grandeur of Antiquity, which he considered a golden age of the past. His art was inspired by Greek and Roman sculpture and by the painting of the High Renaissance, to which he gave continuity. From these references, Rubens' painting conveys an exalted image of life and the world, full of feeling. This course has been designed with the intention of offering a panoramic view that does justice to this extraordinary artist.




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Wednesday, January 25
The Greatness of Rubens


Alejandro Vergara
Head of Conservation of Flemish Painting and Northern Schools up to 1700, Museo del Prado, Madrid.


D. in Art History from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, with a doctoral thesis dedicated to the relationship between Rubens and Spain. He is a specialist in the work of this artist and in Flemish painting of the 17th century, and also researches on the Dutch pictorial production of the 16th and 17th centuries, subjects on which he has written numerous scientific publications. He is a professor at the universities of California San Diego and Columbia University in New York. Since 1999 he has worked at the Museo del Prado, an institution for which he has curated numerous exhibitions including: Vermeer and the Dutch Interior, Rubens. The Adoration of the Magi, Patinir and the Invention of Landscape, Snayers, Callot and Battle Painting, Rembrandt. Painter of Stories, Rubens, The Young Van Dyck, The Art of Clara Peeters and Velázquez, Rembrandt, Vermeer. Miradas afines and Pasiones mitológicas. In 2022 he published the book What is quality in art?


Wednesday 1 February
Rubens. Religious Painting as Sacred Conversation


Palma Martínez-Burgos
Professor of History of Art, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha


PhD in Art History from the UNED. She has been working at teaching since 1993 at the University of Castilla-La Mancha. Her main lines of research are the programs of study gender, aspects of Orthodoxy, spirituality and visual culture of art of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries with special attention to the process of the Reformation and Counter Reformation. He also studies the figure of El Greco and the relationship between painting and cinema. He has numerous publications in national and international specialized magazines and collaborates in various seminars, courses of doctorate and programs of study of Master's Degree. In the field of museology, she is a member of scientific committees and curator of exhibitions such as Erasmus in Spain. La recepción del Humanismo, Celosías and La estela del milagro: el entierro del Señor de Orgaz.

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Wednesday, February 8
From canvas to loom: Rubens' designs for tapestries


Ana García Sanz
Curator, National Heritage



With a degree in Art History from the Complutense University of Madrid, she has worked at Patrimonio Nacional since 1987, where she is in charge of the study and cataloguing of works of art and the design and mounting of exhibitions. She is currently curator of the Monastery of the Descalzas Reales in Madrid and the Monastery of Santa Clara in Tordesillas. She gives conferences and participates in courses and congresses as well as in different projects of research. She is a specialist in the women collectors of the House of Austria and in the tapestries of Rubens, with special attention to the series of the Eucharist. Author of the book Iconografía de Santa Clara en el Monasterio de las Descalzas Reales, she collaborates in numerous collective works and publishes articles in specialized magazines. 


Wednesday 15 February
Effigy and fable. The portraits of Rubens


Jaime García-Máiquez
Technician of the Technical Documentation Office of the Museo del Prado


graduate in Art History from the University of Cadiz where she is preparing the doctoral thesis El vino en la pintura barroca del Museo del Prado. She works as researcher in the Technical Documentation Office of the Restoration area of the Prado Museum, where she carries out a scientific analysis of works of art using infrared reflectography and radiography techniques. He publishes numerous articles on the technique of the great masters and collaborates in the catalogs raisonné of the collections of the Museo del Prado, among which are those dedicated to Bosch, El Greco, Titian, Velázquez and Goya. He also gives lectures on the technical study of works of art in various cultural institutions. He is also a poet, author of several books of poems, including the award-winning Vivir al día and Otro cantar.

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Buy your tickets now


General: 60€.
Special groups*: 48€.
*academic staff and students of the University of Navarra, Friends of the University of Navarra Museum and Friends of the Prado Museum, Alumni University of Navarra, academic staff of secondary school and high school diploma, university students from other centers (UNED, UPNA and other universities) and seniors over 65 years. (Previous accreditation and withdrawal of tickets).
Single sessions: 20€.

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University of Navarra Museum