Robert Peake the Elder (c. 1551–1619) was an English painter active in the later part of Elizabeth I's reign and for most of the reign of James I. In 1604, he was appointed picture maker to the heir to the throne, Prince Henry; and in 1607, serjeant-painter to King James I – a post he shared with John De Critz. Peake is often called "the elder", to distinguish him from his son, the painter and print seller William Peake (c. 1580–1639) and from his grandson, Sir Robert Peake (c. 1605–67), who followed his father into the family print-selling business.
Peake was the only English-born painter of a group of four artists whose workshops were closely connected. The others were De Critz, Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger, and the miniature painter Isaac Oliver. Between 1590 and about 1625, they specialised in brilliantly coloured, full-length "costume pieces" that are unique to England at this time. It is not always possible to attribute authorship between Peake, De Critz, Gheeraerts and their assistants with certainty.
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Tate Etc. invited a selection of contemporary artists featured in the new rehang of British art at Tate Britain to …