Rembrandt Remastered is an exhibition that gives an amazing overview of Rembrandt’s most beautiful works through this unique collection of life sized paintings.
In collaboration with the Rembrandt Research Project Foundation and Professor van de Wetering, the Rembrandt Remastered Exhibition will Tour New Zealand in 2015.
Using the latest techniques and the inexhaustible knowledge of Professor Ernst van de Wetering, all the works are digitally restored to their original condition as they may have left Rembrandt’s studio.
The paintings are the same size as the originals and displayed to provide an overview of the life and oeuvre of the great painter.
An ode to the Dutch master. Rembrandt made 330 paintings in his life and they are now scattered over the world, currently spread over 18 countries. 52 pieces are inaccessible to the public for various reasons, for example the paintings are in private possession, stolen or in long-term restoration.
Some of the works included in the NZ Tour are:
The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp
Christ in the Storm on the Lake of Galilee
The Polish Rider
The Jewish Bride
The Syndics of the Amsterdam Clothmaker's Guild
and some of his best self portraits.
THE REMBRANDT RESEARCH PROJECT
The Rembrandt Research Project (RRP) was launched in 1968 in Amsterdam, with the aim of identifying the painter’s complete works.
Ernst van de Wetering became the chairman of the project group in 1993, and now enjoys international acclaim as the world’s most important Rembrandt specialist.
Under his leadership, we have gained a much clearer idea of the extent of Rembrandt’s works. It has now been established that they number 330 paintings.
Ernst van de Wetering studied art and art history, and has been involved with the Rembrandt Research Project as a researcher, writer and editor from the very beginning.
The Rembrandt Remastered exhibition can therefore be regarded as the outcome of decades of intensive research into Rembrandt.
REMBRANDT: 1606 -1669
Born in Leiden, Netherlands in 1606, Rembrandt Harmen van Rijn was the greatest Dutch painter of his age and is one of the most important figures in European art. The many self-portraits he painted throughout his life provide us with a visual autobiography.
Rembrandt van Rijn was born on 15 July 1606 in Leiden, the son of a mill owner. In 1621, he began training with a local painter and in 1624-1625 he was in Amsterdam, studying with Pieter Lastman who had been to Italy and now introduced Rembrandt to international trends.
Rembrandt settled permanently in Amsterdam in 1631 and set up as a portrait painter. One of his first major public commissions was ‘The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Tulp’ (1632).
In 1634, he married the well-connected Saskia van Uylenburgh. Rembrandt prospered, painting mythological and religious works as well as portraits, and the couple lived well
One of Rembrandt’s most well-known paintings, ‘The Nightwatch’, a group portrait of one of Amsterdam’s militia companies, was completed in 1642.
Saskia died in the same year, which coincided with difficulties in Rembrandt’s business. This, coupled with his extravagance, resulted in him being declared bankrupt in 1656. His house and possessions were sold, including his own large collection of works of art.
Often blamed for Rembrandt’s supposed downfall are the death of his wife and the supposed rejection of The Nightwatch by those who commissioned it. But modern research has found no evidence that the painting was rejected or that Rembrandt experienced deep devastation upon his wife’s death. There is also no evidence that he was ever “ignored,” although he was often the target of his contemporary critics’ barbs.
After Saskia’s death, Rembrandt had an affair with his son’s nurse, but they quarrelled and he later began a relationship with his housekeeper, Hendrickje Stoffels. She frequently modelled for him.
Rembrandt continued to receive commissions and some of the great paintings from this period are ‘The Syndics of the Clothmakers Guild’ (1662) and ‘The Jewish Bride’ (c. 1666).
Rembrandt was interested in drawing and etching as well as painting, and his etchings were internationally renowned during his lifetime.
Throughout his career, he attracted pupils who also served as his assistants. Their work can sometimes be hard to distinguish from Rembrandt’s own.
Rembrandt died on 4 October 1669 aged 63.
BEFORE & AFTER
Isaak and Rebekka (‘The Jewish Bride’),
ca. 1665 - 1669
Thanks to a drawing by Rembrandt we know that the couple depicted here are Isaac (the son of Abraham from the Old Testament) and his wife Rebecca in a nocturnal garden.
Over the years, this painting changed dramatically - craquelure has formed and colours faded.
Rembrandt Remastered recovered the original colours and restored the painting digitally to its original glory.
The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp
1632 - Mauritshuis Museum, The Hague.
The doctor is pictured explaining the musculature of the arm
to medical professionals.
Some of the spectators are doctors who paid to be included in the painting. The painting is signed in the top-left hand
corner Rembrandt. 1632.
This may be the first instance of Rembrandt signing a painting with his forename (in its original form) as opposed to the
monogramme RHL and is thus a sign of his growing artistic confidence.