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Rembrandt

Self portrait, ca. 1655
Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum, inv./cat.nr. 414
<a class="recordlink artists" href="/explore/artists/66219" title="Rembrandt"><span class="text">Rembrandt</span></a> <a class="recordlink artists" href="/explore/artists/66219" title="Rembrandt"><span class="text">Rembrandt</span></a> <a class="recordlink artists" href="/explore/artists/66219" title="Rembrandt"><span class="text">Rembrandt</span></a> <a class="recordlink artists" href="/explore/artists/66219" title="Rembrandt"><span class="text">Rembrandt</span></a>
provenance
whereabouts
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Object information
Object category
painting
Support/medium
panel, oil paint
The wood is identified as walnut. The panel displays a series of cracks. A second panel of equal thickness with cradling is glued to the back. The cradle was renewed in 1942 (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13).
Shape/dimensions
rectangle (portrait format) 48,9 x 40,2 cm
Unlikely that these are the original dimensions of the painting. The head is set in an unusual narrow frame, compared to other self portraits by Rembrandt and there are saw marks along the lower edge unusual for works on panel by Rembrandt. A reason for reducing the size could be the many cracks in the support. The reduction in size must have taken place prior to 1783, when Von Mechel mentioned the painting in his catalog in its present dimensions (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13).
Signature/inscription
Information about the signature, dating, inscription or any other mark on the front or back of the art work
  • with signature upper left: Rembrandt.f
    The signature is partly located on an overpainting applied to a crack in the panel in the left upper corner. This has led the authors of the Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings to conclude that the signature is false. They suggest that the signature was later added in this unusual place to replace an original one that may have been lost when the painting was reduced. The type of letters used exclude the possibility that it was copied from an original signature (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13).
Current attribution
Rembrandt
Date
Exact or approximate dating of the described art work; the search parameters adopted for this art work in this database, are found in brackets.
c. 1655 (1652 - 1658)
In art historical literature, the painting was variously dated to 1664 (Smith 1829-1842, vol. 7 (1836), no. 222); 1665 (Hofstede de Groot 1907-1928 (German edition), vol. 6 (1915), no. 581). Since Bredius dated the painting to 1657 (Bredius 1935, no. 49), the painting has been dated to c. 1657 (Bauch 1955, no. 326; Gerson 1968, no. 324; Tümpel 1986, no. 171; Wenen 1991, no. 414); 1657-1659 (Slatkes 1992, no. 262); c. 1655 (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13). Dating the work to the second half of the 1650s is based on comparison with physiognomical features in other self portraits from the same period (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13).
Represented
IB number
Number related to the portrait iconography collection RKD.
61217
Identification based on
resemblance
Artistically related
Artistically related to other work
Such as a preparatory studie, comparable composition, other version, or copy of the artwork in this record.
  • used as model for
    Anoniem
    Mahogany panel, 50 x 40 cm, signed "n[ach] Rembrandt"

    Present whereabouts unknown. Depicts the original in its already reduced state and reproduces damages to such an extent that it must be a relatively late copy (Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings 1982-2015, vol. 4 (2005), no. IV 13).

  • used as model for
    Anoniem
    Signed "n[ach] Rembrandt"

    Nineteenth-century copy in a private collection in Bern, Switzerland (Wenen 1972, no. 414, p. 79)

  • used as model for
    Siegwald Johannes Dahl
    Nineteenth-century copy in a private collection in Bergen, Norway (Wright 1982, no. 46)

Provenance
Exhibitions and literature
Visual documentation
Entered on: 2000-04-03; Last modification: 2018-08-06

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