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The 'Brouwershuis' (house of Brewers) was built in 1550. It includes a water
distribution system for the many beerbrewers in Antwerp.The water, from natural sources outside Antwerp, was brought in through a pipe
system. The Council Hall includes a 'Delft' tile tableau of
1.80 m by 1.32 m or 165 tiles. The tableau originated most likely from a tile
factory in Rotterdam. The picture shows two mythical stories,
the left Io in the form of a cow, and on the right Europe carried away.
Io is guarded by Argus with the hundred eyes. But he falls asleep while
Hermes plays the flute.
The Panel indicates as date, 12 November 1680 and shows the initials CVP. The
museum bought the tiles in 1932. Given the initials
it probably originated
from a well known beerbrewer Carel van Pruyssen, who had a brewery annex coopery
in the same street.
The upper and lower ornamental friezes show abundantly his
type of activity.
The design of Io and Europe and her maidens appear to reflect similar
prints by Hendrick Golzius. The tile designer/painter is unknown.
Lovis Corinth illustrated with 8 lithographs, Schiller's early poem: "Der
Venuswagen", 1781. It was published by Fritz Gurlitt Verlag, Berlin, in
The poem describes how everyone's life is subject to continuing desire for lust and
sensuality. But with chastity goes the mind
- "Mit der Keuschheit fliegt
der Geist davon" - and only animality stays. It includes a warning against
syphilis with, at that time, deadly consequences.
The 'Venus Charriot' stands for
this drive for lust and Venus is her devilish source.
One of the lithographs is the well-known representation of Europe's story.
one or two verses appear to refer to Europe's adventure, and even than rather
"With this cattle disguise in substituants
Often Zeus wonderfully fits in. Though,
Wish luck to sensible people's governments,
When the ruler is grazing the meadow. "
Apparently, he sees Europe here representing her people which are led astray by
Antwerp, January, 2013
The special Rafaël exhibition during the second half of 1912 in the Teylers
Museum in Haarlem, Netherlands
featured many drawings from the master and his pupils. The Albertina in Wien
collaborated with, amongst others,
a yellow-brownish drawing of Europe and the bull by Baldassare Peruzzi,
1481-1536. It is suggested to be a
preparatory study for a fresco in the villa Farnesina in Rome.
However the Europe image in the Farnesina villa does not resemble at all the
part of a ceiling fresco in the Salla della Prospettive
on the east wall. Left, there is Hermes guiding the herd; than the frightened
lady-friends and on the right Europe sitting rather calmly
on the white bull
already swimming in the sea.
Baldassare Peruzzi has also elaborated fresco's of Europe in Castello di Belcaro
in the vicinity of Sienna (my study p.113).
On the ceiling of the Arcade in its garden there are three cupolas; one with
images of the three graces; one with images of
Venus and one with Europe.
The top ceiling shows Europe sitting on the bull, lying on the shore; Europe and
the bull at sea and ships, apparently referring
to Herodote's interpretation
of Europe carried away by ship. Around the top there are four decorations of
Europe with bull in different postures.
The individual Europe pictures show twice Europe on a bull, once on a fishlike
bullcreature (according to Nonnos) and once (25-07) on a horse.
It is true sometime during the Renaissance when the four continents are
symbolized, each continent is represented by a lady with accompanying animal,
like Asia with an elephant, Africa with a lion, Europe with a horse. The latter
representation has no relation with the historically rich eponym
of the European
February 1, 1013, with thanks to Ellen Wolff, Haarlem
The famous Book of Painters ( Het Schilder-Boeck ) by Karel van Mander, Haerlem,
1604, contains a chapter concerning Frans Floris and his family.
His father was Cornelis de Vriendt, stone mason, sometimes called Floris. This
name was taken up by his four sons.
The oldest Cornelis Floris, 1514-1575 was architect (townhall of Antwerp) and
sculptor. Frans de Vriendt- Floris was a famous Flemish painter,
1520-1570. He became very rich and his boosing became as famous as his paintings.
Jan (Hans) Floris, † 1567, died young and became
well-known as ceramist painter.
He travelled to Spain in 1551 and worked for Philips II from 1562 in Talavera de
The fourth son Jacob-Jacques Floris, 1524-1581, became glass painter (
glass and lead, glass burning). He made a.o. a church window in
The Rijksprentenkabinet of Amsterdam has prints for wall decorations,
one shows Europa on the bull in sea and
her friends gesticulating on the wall. It is
136 by 206 mm.
The ornamental designs are signed by Jacob Floris.
A Delft's blue tile painting appears to have been based on the design of Jacob
Floris. It is attributed to Frans Floris, although Jan Floris would be a
more obvious choice.
A complication is its thickness of 7 mm which is mostly found about 1650, a date
almost hundred years after that generation of the Floris family. The only
possibility is that the design drawing for the tile still existed and was used
again in a later period. It would explain the rather crude execution of the
see Mytholiogische Voorstellingen op Nederlandse Tegels by
Jan Pluis & Reinhard Stupperich, Primavera Pers, Leiden, 2011
March 1, 2013
In French culturel circles Jean Cocteau, 1889-1963, was omnipresent . A
multi-talented Renaissance man, making his imprint
on the international cultural scène, as a poet, novelist, painter, playwright,actor, set-designer, cineast of avant garde movies. In 1961
he joined Mario Sciaky, industrialist and editor, in his project to complete the
Europe of the politicians and administrators developping
the European Community on the basis of the Treaty of Roms of 1958. They wanted
to stimulate the participation of the European citizen
in 'project Europe' on a more emotional and romantic basis: L'Europe du
Coeur. Sciaky wanted an
Europe stamp, which Europe citizen's could put on all their
letters and postal communications. In 1960 Sciaky had already distributed 3
million picture stamps with the flags of the six member states amalgamated on
In 1961, Jean Cocteau designed 13 new designs for stamps with human heads and one with the
European myth. Probably, he remembered his saying:
"Myth consists of lies which finally turn into truths". The lithographs carried all in writing the sentiment they wanted to diffuse to all citizens:
Nous croyons à l'Europe
ou l'Europe notre Patrie .
The stamps were not given an official stamp status. Perhaps the Gaulle preferred
a more French style slogan. Other preoccupations took over. Until
the year 1979 when Mario Sciaky listened to the inspiring words of Louise Weiss at the opening of
the European Parliament in that year. Sciaky decided to edit as yet
Cocteau's never published designs, with the agreement of the Cocteau estate. He
issued a study of the project of Jean Cocteau entitled, Nous croyons en
l'Europe, of 600 prints on 'Ingres' paper by Arjomari-Prioux, Paris.
The prints represented here are part of copyno. 192. Cocteau's lithographs have
been printed according to the original size of his dessins, 32 - 40 cm. The
edition includes two pages with unofficial stamps picturing his designs. One
page with 54 stamps of 4.5-4.5 cm and 45 stamps of 6.0-4.5 cm. This study
includes a lithograph of a portrait of Jean Cocteau in 1935 from an unknown
Brussels, 2 April, edition Mario Sciaky, Paris
Dutch artists and sculptors continue to be fascinated by the Europa myth. Jan de
Graaf, 1948, Dordrecht, studied at the Rotterdam Academy of Plastics Art.
He concentrates mostly on bronze statuettes in figurative simple stylized manner.
His animals are often voluminous, overblown in contrast to his human figures.
His interpretation of the Europe myth shows perfect examples of his style.
The higth of his statuettes are 25-26 cm. and eight copies have been made.
Number 25_14 shows Europe lying back to back. On number 25_16 Europe is
lying face down, elbows bended and on 25_17 Europe lies reclined on his back.
Does the overpowering seize of the bull indicates his godly might?
Anothe sculptor, Evert van Hemert, 1952, is an autodidact painter and sculptor.
He also shows the same type of voluminous figures, but here Europe appears to be
riding her colossal partner.
Mai 2, Utrecht, Dr. Peter van der Lubbe
Interest in the Europe myth of Nandipha Mntambo, born in Swaziland, 1981,
originates from her artistic involvement with cowhides. She got her masters from
Michaelis school of Fine Art in Cape Town in 2007. In her sculptures, video's,
photographs she concentrate for subjects on the human body, its hide in relation
to bulls. Of course Europe's tale fits in nicely in that type of imaginations.
In this composition photo Mntambo tries to morphe into a bull with on her head
and face covered with bullskin and horns.
Showing figuratively her overpowering by the bullgod.
In the second composite photo she acts out both Europe and also the physically
In explaining this subject. It is said that Zeus takes Europe to one of the
Greek isles. A rather short summary of the legend
and its meaning.
June 1, Sandra Gommers