Artworks at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp

The Raising of the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp

The Raising of the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp

The Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp is a Gothic cathedral in the old town center of Antwerp. The belfry rises high above the city and is part of the Belfries of Belgium and France UNESCO World Heritage site. I have been to a few Gothic cathedrals in Europe and this didn’t seem to that different. Don’t get me wrong, the interiors of the cathedral are as grand as you might expect, perhaps I have been spoiled by too much grand-ness. I guess one my first impressions was the cathedral had that air of mystery to it. I think it is because the lights in the two wings of the church weren’t very bright, in fact it was quite dark. I was wondering about that since there were a lot of stained glass windows on both sides. The central area was quite bright and I noticed that there was lesser amount of stained glass windows there. I guess it really has that much of an effect to the amount of light it lets in.

The Descent from the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp

The Descent from the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp

Both sides of the church have numerous artworks displayed. It was almost like it was an art museum but it seem that they are really displayed here permanently. There seem to be a few famous works here, none of the familiar to me. The themes here are all religious in nature. Some of the works here include The Raising of the Cross and The Descent from the Cross by Peter Paul Reubens. I have never heard of this artist before but there are a lot of his work on display here. Some of the works were even looted by Napoleon but subsequently returned to the church. It would be nice to take some time to appreciate the works of art here. I guess it is not very common that a working Cathedral is also an art museum.

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