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REMBRANDT AND THE DUTCH GOLDEN AGE – MASTERPIECES FROM THE RIJKSMUSEUM – AT THE ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES

November 28, 2017

REMBRANDT AND THE DUTCH GOLDEN AGE   –   MASTERPIECES FROM THE RIJKSMUSEUM   –   AT THE ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES         11  NOV  2017 – 18  FEB  2018

The works of art by the greatest Dutch painters of the 17th century.

Drawn from the Rijksmuseum, the renowned national collection of the Netherlands, this exhibition includes a rare painting by Johannes Vermeer and a room dedicated to one of the greatest minds in the history of art, Rembrandt van Rijn.

Rembrandt and the Dutch golden age presents a richly unfolding panorama of Dutch society during an era of unparalleled wealth, power and cultural confidence. In the Dutch golden age, the art of painting flourished like never before. Artists sensitively observed the beauty of the visible world, transforming it, with great skill, into vivid and compelling paintings. Their subjects ranged from intense portraits and dramatic seascapes to tranquil scenes of domestic life and careful studies of fruit and flowers.

 

 

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Rembrandt and the Dutch golden age masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum – The Merry Homecoming, by Jan Steen, 1670-79, Dutch painting, oil on canvas. A drunken man is helped into a boat after leaving the inn in right background. He joins several others including children, teenagers and a nursing mother. Three figures bid them farewell. Dutch Baroque Era Painter, ca.1625-1679 Daily life was Jan Steen’s main pictorial theme. Many of the genre scenes he portrayed are lively to the point of chaos and lustfulness, even so much that a Jan Steen household, meaning a messy scene, became a Dutch proverb (een huishouden van Jan Steen). Subtle hints in his paintings seem to suggest that Steen meant to warn the viewer rather than invite him to copy this behaviour. Many of Steen’s paintings bear references to old Dutch proverbs or literature. He often used members of his family as models. Jan Steen painted also quite a few self-portraits, in which he showed no tendency of vanity. Steen did not shy from other themes: he painted historical, mythological and religious scenes, portraits, still lifes and natural scenes. His portraits of children are famous. He is also well known for his mastery of light and attention to detail, most notably in textiles. Steen was prolific, producing about 800 paintings, of which roughly 350 survive. Steen’s work was valued much by contemporaries and as a result he was reasonably well paid for his work. He did not have any students, but his work proved a source of inspiration for many painters.

 

 

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Portrait of a Man, thought to be Dr. Ephraïm Bueno, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn, 1645 – 1647 – Physician and poet Ephraim Hezekiah Bueno (1599-1665), also known as Bonus, descended from a prominent family of Marranos living in Amsterdam. Like his father, he had studied medicine in Bordeaux. A friend and collaborator of Manasseh ben Israel, Bueno copublished the first Hebrew book in Amsterdam in 1627 on Manasseh’s press.

 

 

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PHOTOS:  LEONARD EPSTEIN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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