The painting titled Energetic Oil Sketch of about 1630 is the last of four painted by Peter Paul Rubens in preparation for his monumental canvas, The Triumph of Henry IV of 1630. This painting was intended to be the climactic scene that would finish off a cycle of twenty-four canvases dedicated to portraying the life of Henry IV. Rubens was born into a working-class family of tanners, lawyers, and burgesses located in Antwerp; it was the biggest and most prosperous seaport at that time. In addition to creating his groundbreaking art, Rubens also developed a new system of classical architecture specifically for Northern Europe that was inspired by Palladio’s designs from antiquity.
Rubens went on to create more paintings such as The Kermesse and The Judgment Of Paris between 1630 – 38. All these paintings were celebrated by several important people at the time; for instance Lord Christopher Hatton even placed some works including them into dedicated fifteen magnificent rooms in order to celebrate their beauty and genius. Thus, Peter Paul Rubens worked on many breathtaking artworks during his lifetime, many of which are still remembered today because they accompanied some major historical events from this era. It is quite remarkable how he managed to combine science illustrations together with contemporary topics into his artwork throughout 200 years ago!