Travelling and Exoticism
Travelling artists and patrons and the exchange of artworks
In part, the essence of the Baroque period stems from artists who travelled across borders to study with a particular school or artist, work for a patron or begin a new commission.
Travelling artists and patrons shaped the artistic landscape of many cities, towns and regions of Europe through the commission of an array of works, both sacred and secular. This exchange can be observed in literature and music, but it assumes particular visibility in architecture and the fine arts. In part, the essence of the Baroque period stems from artists who travelled across borders to study with a particular school or artist, work for a patron or begin a new commission. Travelling to the Italian Peninsula, and especially to Rome, was an important experience for artists who, throughout Europe, made direct or indirect references to Italian painting. This network created an unfurling of specific subjects, techniques and artistic languages.
Susanna and the Old Men

1607
Borghese Gallery
Rome, Italy
Peter Paul Rubens
Oil on canvas
Probably commissioned by Cardinal Borghese, the Dutch artist, Rubens, is the author of this painting (1606–08) on a biblical theme that was popular during the Counter-Reformation: the fight between truth and virtue (personified by Susanna) and lies (symbolised by the elders).