Rembrandt: Master of States Illuminates the Creative Process Behind One of the Most Acclaimed Artists in History
Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (1606-1669), widely considered to be one of the greatest painters and printmakers in European art, was born in Leiden on July 15, 1606. Early in his life, Rembrandt achieved success as a portrait artist, and he produced many portraits of himself and his commissioners. Rembrandt achieved tremendous popularity in his lifetime and taught many important Dutch painters. During the height of his career, he purchased his own printing press, which he used to explore and refine his engraving and etching techniques. It is likely that he printing some of his early works himself, enabling him to study methods of ink application and printing as well. His paintings are proudly displayed in museums the world over, but his prints are too fragile to be permanently shown. These prints, when shown in sets of several states (stages of completion), reveal the artist's creative process. This exhibition provides an extraordinarily rare opportunity to glimpse Rembrandt's mind as he developed scenes of Christ's suffering and death, as well as a portrait of modest print seller. A variety of insights can be gained by examining a set of states, depending on the subject matter of the work, as well as the degree and nature of the changes made.