Thomas de Paep

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A split melon, lemon, grapes, figs and other fruit on a draped table-top Thomas de Paep - A split melon, lemon, grapes, figs and other fruit on a draped table-top.jpeg
A split melon, lemon, grapes, figs and other fruit on a draped table-top

Thomas de Paep [1] (ca. 1628-1630, Mechelen – 1670, Mechelen) was a Flemish painter who specialised in still lifes and in particular fruit still lifes. He was active in Mechelen. [2]

Mechelen Municipality in Flemish Community, Belgium

Mechelen is a city and municipality in the province of Antwerp, Flanders, Belgium. The municipality comprises the city of Mechelen proper, some quarters at its outskirts, the hamlets of Nekkerspoel (adjacent) and Battel, as well as the villages of Walem, Heffen, Leest, Hombeek, and Muizen. The Dyle flows through the city, hence it is often referred to as the Dijlestad.

Southern Netherlands historical region in Belgium

The Southern Netherlands, also called the Catholic Netherlands, was the part of the Low Countries largely controlled by Spain (1556–1714), later Austria (1714–1794), and occupied then annexed by France (1794–1815). The region also included a number of smaller states that were never ruled by Spain or Austria: the Prince-Bishopric of Liège, the Imperial Abbey of Stavelot-Malmedy, the County of Bouillon, the County of Horne and the Princely Abbey of Thorn. The Southern Netherlands were part of the Holy Roman Empire until the whole area was annexed by Revolutionary France.

Still life art genre

A still life is a work of art depicting mostly inanimate subject matter, typically commonplace objects which are either natural or man-made.



Very little is known about this artist who was active in Mechelen, an artistic centre not far removed from Antwerp, the key artistic hub in the Southern Netherlands. In 1638 he was a pupil of Jean Baptiste (II) Saive. In 1648 he became a master in the Mechelen Guild of Saint Luke.

Guild of Saint Luke type of artist collective, usually a guild including artist-related professions, such as art teachers and art appraisers

The Guild of Saint Luke was the most common name for a city guild for painters and other artists in early modern Europe, especially in the Low Countries. They were named in honor of the Evangelist Luke, the patron saint of artists, who was identified by John of Damascus as having painted the Virgin's portrait.

He remained active in Mechelen until his death in 1670. [2]


Still life of cherries, peaches, a half-peeled lemon Thomas de Paep - Still life of cherries, peaches, a half-peeled lemon.PNG
Still life of cherries, peaches, a half-peeled lemon

Thomas de Paep painted still lifes, usually with fruit and ancillary objects. These works appear to have been influenced by Jan Davidsz. de Heem, who worked in Antwerp close to Mechelen. [3]

Jan Davidsz. de Heem painter from the Northern Netherlands

Jan Davidsz. de Heem or in-full Jan Davidszoon de Heem, also called Johannes de Heem or Johannes van Antwerpen or Jan Davidsz de Hem, was a still life painter who was active in Utrecht and Antwerp. He is a major representative of that genre in both Dutch and Flemish Baroque painting.

A landscape with a red cockerel between two hens, one black and one white, the latter clucking over two chicks; a ruined wall behind and in the distance a mountainous landscape (Royal Collection, dated 1650-1670) has been attributed to de Paep. [4]

Royal Collection Art collection of the British Royal Family

The Royal Collection of the British Royal family is the largest private art collection in the world.


  1. Variant name spellings: Thomas de Gaep, Thomas de Pape, Thomas de Papen, Thomas De Paep, Thomas van Paep
  2. 1 2 Thomas de Paep at the Netherlands Institute for Art History (in Dutch)
  3. Paep, de, Thomas, “Some fruit with a glass of wine” at Museum Bredius
  4. Attributed to Thomas de Paep (1628-70?), Cockerel and Two Hens 1650-70? at the Royal Collection

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