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Pupil of Rembrandt — The Holy Family at night

Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum, Inv. No. A 4119
  • Ernst Van De Wetering
Part of the Stichting Foundation Rembrandt Research Project book series (RRSE, volume 5)

Abstract

Opinion over the authorship of this painting was long divided after Hamann rejected the attribution to Rembrandt in 1948 and suggested Nicolaes Maes as its possible maker.1 Since Bauch2 and Gerson3 in 1966 and 1968, respectively, followed Hamann and omitted the Holy Family at night from their catalogues of Rembrandt’s oeuvre, it has received scant attention in the art-historical literature: the painting is not included in more recent monographs on Rembrandt by Schwartz and Tümpel, and in his Gemälde der Rembrandtschüler Sumowski catal ogued it as an anonymous work from the school of Rem brandt.4 In 2006 Taco Dibbits gave a detailed account of the vicissitudes endured by this painting and the history of its reception.5 Al though we in no way doubt the painting’s dis attribution, it displays so many Rembrandtesque features that the question of its relationship with autograph work by Rembrandt justifies a separate entry.

Keywords

British Museum Back Wall Paint Layer Paint Surface Cast Shadow 
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Notes

  1. 1.
    R. Hamann, Rembrandt, Potsdam 1948, p. 288; supported by Sumowski 1957/58, p. 225.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bauch 1966, p. 49.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    In Gerson 1968, the Holy Family at night is not included in the catalogue; in Br.-Gerson, p. 608, Gerson’s opinion that the painting is from Rembrandt’s workshop is further explained.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Sumowski Gemälde IV, no. 1902.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    T. Dibbits, ‚Ooit Rembrandts „vermaarde schilderij“: de receptiegeschiedenis van Heilige Familie bij avond‘, Bulletin van het Rijksmuseum 54 (2006), no. 2, pp. 100–121.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    On the working sequence, see Vol. I, Chapter II, pp. 11–33, esp. 25–31.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    P.J.J. van Thiel, ‚Rembrandts Heilige Familie bij avond‘, Bulletin van het Rijksmuseum 13 (1965), pp. 145–161, esp. 159 note 16.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    J. Richardson Jr., An account of some of the statues, bas-reliefs, drawings and paintings in Italy, etc. with remarks, London 1722, p. 21.Google Scholar
  9. 10.
    Hamann, op. cit.1, p. 288.Google Scholar
  10. 11.
    Only Bauch suggested a somewhat later dating of around 1650, see K. Bauch, ‚Ausstellung holländischer Kunst von 1450–1900 in London‘, Zeitschr.f.b.K. 63 (1929/30), pp. 9–23, esp. 18.Google Scholar
  11. 12.
    J. Rosenberg, ‚Die Rembrandt-Ausstellung in Holland‘, Kunstchronik 9 (1956), pp. 345–354, esp. 347.Google Scholar
  12. 13.
    Van Thiel, op. cit.7, p. 150.Google Scholar
  13. 14.
    A.B. de Vries, Rembrandt, Baarn 1956, p. 49.Google Scholar
  14. 15.
    J.G. van Gelder, ‚De Heilige Familie bij avond‘, Openbaar Kunstbezit 10 (1966), no. 36.Google Scholar
  15. 16.
    M. Royalton Kisch, Drawings by Rembrandt and his circle in the British Museum, London 1992, cat. no. 43.Google Scholar
  16. 17.
    Hollst. III, p. 18 no. 4; the date in the print is difficult to decipher. Bartsch (II no. 4) read it as 1648; Hind (Catalogue of drawings by Dutch and Flemish artists… in the British Museum I, London 1915, p. 61 no. 1) as 1643; and Münz (II, pl. 23b) as 1645.Google Scholar
  17. 18.
    W. Goeree, Inleydinge tot de algemeene teykenkonst, Amsterdam 16973 (1668), p. 33: ‚van een groote, in een kleine proportie brengen‘.Google Scholar
  18. 19.
    Goeree, op. cit.18, p. 34: ‚de houdinge, en de betamelijke voor en agteruytwijkingen, die inde Schilderye is, ook in sijn Teikening overbrengen.’ see for houdinge, P. Taylor, ‚The concept of „Houding“ in Dutch art theory‘, Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 55 (1992), pp. 210–232.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 20.
    For example, see Sumowski Gemälde III, no. 1331 and 1336.Google Scholar
  20. 21.
    Sumowski Gemälde III, no. 1134.Google Scholar
  21. 22.
    Sumowski Gemälde III, esp. p. 1628.Google Scholar
  22. 24.
    Cat. Dutch and Flemish, Netherlandish and German paintings in the Glasgow Art Gallery, Glasgow 1961, no. 98.Google Scholar
  23. 25.
    See on this: P. Sutton, ‚Hendrick van den Burch‘, Burl. Mag. 122 (1980), pp. 315–326.Google Scholar
  24. 26.
    Van Thiel, op. cit.7, pp. 150–151.Google Scholar
  25. 27.
    GAA, not. S. Wijmer, NA 4845, act 78, pp. 717–783 and 784–796, d.d. 9 October 1709, esp. pp. 729 and 733.Google Scholar
  26. 28.
    Richardson, op. cit.8, p. 21.Google Scholar
  27. 29.
    C. Stryienski, La galerie du Régent Philippe, duc d’Orléans, Paris 1913, p. 182, no. 398.Google Scholar
  28. 30.
    W. Buchanan, Memoirs of painting, with a chronological history of the importation of pictures by the great masters into England since the French Revolution, London 1824, vol. I, p. 196.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Stichting Foundation Rembrandt Research Project 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ernst Van De Wetering

There are no affiliations available

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