Venius (or Van Veen), Otho

Venius (or Van Veen), Otho an eminent Dutch painter, was born at Leyden in 1556. He received a classical education, and was instructed in design by Isaac Nicholas, and in painting by Jodocus Van Winghen. On account of the civil wars, he retired to Liege, and, through the influence of cardinal Grosbeck, he went to Rome, where he entered the school of Federigo Zuccaro, at the same time studying diligently the works of the masters. He remained several years in Italy, and then set out for home. He stopped on the way at Vienna in the service of the emperor, and at Munich and Cologne, where he executed several works for the duke of Bavaria. On his arrival at Brussels, he entered: into the service of Alessandro Farnese, prince of Parma, at that time governor of the Netherlands. He painted the portrait of the prince and several historical works, which established his reputation as one of the foremost artists of his time. After the death of Farnese, he went to Antwerp, where he was employed to execute some works for the churches and public edifices, and opened an academy in which he had the honor of instructing Rubens. He afterwards went to Brussels in the service of the archduke Albert, where he remained until his death, in 1634. Among his most important paintings are the Last Supper, in the Cathedral of Antwerp the Marriage of St. Catherine, in the Church of the Capuchins at Brussels: — the Resurrection of Lazarus, at Ghent: — and the Adoration of the Magi, at Bruges. He was also distinguished in literature. He published, among others, the War of the Batavians, from Tacitus: Horace's Emblems, with Observations: — Life of Thomas Aquinas: — and Emblems of Love, Divine and Profane. See Spooner, Biog. Hist. of the Fine Arts, s.v.

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