A RETURN TO REMBRANDT, CLOSE-UP
Dr Aneta Georgievska-Shine, lecturer in art history, University of Maryland
The year 2019 marks the 350th anniversary of the death of Rembrandt van Rijn (1606–1669), arguably the greatest painter of the Dutch Golden Age. It has been celebrated with exhibitions from Amsterdam (Rijksmuseum) and the Hague (Mauritshuis) to Abu Dhabi. One of the reasons for our continued fascination is surely Rembrandt’s uncommon gift for capturing not just the faces, but the emotions of his subjects. This gift was already recognised by his first critics in seventeenth century Holland. So too were his virtuoso play with light and shadow and his loose and expressive brushstrokes. Yet he could also be very difficult – pursuing a style perceived as too daring, to the point that later in life he lost patrons and faced bankruptcy. This course will look at facets of his pictorial language which have secured him such a unique place in the history of Western art.
1. The beginnings: Leiden and Amsterdam
2. Rembrandt as a history painter – from classical mythology to The Night Watch
3. Rembrandt’s women – Saskia and Hendrickje
4. Rembrandt on paper – drawings and prints
5. The self-portrait as a diary