At the request of the Antwerp municipal magistrate, on 17 April 1635 a souvenir album was published to commemorate the triumphant arrival of the new governor of the Low Countries Cardinal-Infant Ferdinand of Austria in Antwerp. In this book the decoration made for the Joyous Arrival was described and depicted. The accompanying text was written by Gaspar Gervatius, who together with Peter Paul Rubens created the concept for the decoration. The prints were made by Van Thulden. This etching represents the painting that decorated the left wing of the welcoming arch on the Mechelseplein in Antwerp, which is now in the Fogg Art Museum in Massachusetts (USA). The image was built up on two different levels. In the foreground a dynamic scene with Neptune in his chariot with sea nymphs while chasing away the north wind Boreas. In the background the war fleet that took the Cardinal-Infant from Barcelona (Spain) to Genoa (Italy) as part of his victory trip from Spain to The Netherlands in 1635. Ferdinand was appointed governor of the Low Countries and successor to the Infante Isabella of Spain by his brother Philip IV, King of Spain.
The voyage of the Cardinal-Infant from Barcelona to Genoa
1635 – 1642
375 mm x 395 mm
Museum Plantin-Moretus (Antwerpen)