Picture Of The Month
In honour of Peter Paul Rubens' birthday on 28 June, our Picture of the Month is his famous "Honeysuckle Bower" painting, today housed at the Alte Pinakothek Munich.
The work shows the artist himself together with his wife Isabella Brant, the daughter of an Antwerp secretary and lawyer. They married in 1609, shortly before this painting was executed.The newlyweds are shown in a casual and intimate pose, holding hands.
The whole picture radiates marital happiness, comfort and wealth. The sitters' fashionable, rich clothing displays their social standing, whilst the lush green backdrop reminds the viewer of the fertile and healthy state of the couple.
The glimpse of a vast landscape opening up to the bottom left alludes to the "garden of love".