Treasured for their innovation and ability to capture the human psyche, Rembrandt’s etchings in college and university art collections in the United States have long inspired research, technical investigation, and multidisciplinary teaching approaches.
This exhibition highlights the scope and subtlety of Rembrandt as an etcher who employed a wide range of subject matter, processes, and materials. Etchings of the 17th century Dutch master are presented through the lenses of connoisseurship, scholarly and public reception, and the history of collection-building, as well as increasingly technical and scientific approaches, such as the study of watermarks.
Co-curated with the Allen Museum of Art at Oberlin College, the show includes loans from Harvard, Princeton, Yale, and other museums alongside Cornell and Oberlin’s holdings. It also explores the technical investigations into Rembrandt’s prints and working process made through the WIRE (Watermark Identification in Rembrandt’s Etchings) project at Cornell.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.
Whether or not you go, The Complete Etchings of Rembrandt: Reproduced in Original Size provides a visual journey of discovery, and demonstrates why Rembrandt is considered the greatest of all 17th century printmakers. In his day, Rembrandt was better known as an etcher than a painter. He moved expertly between genres, demonstrating his ingenuity, insight into human emotion and mastery of the medium in every image. The compositions are beautifully balanced despite a wealth of narrative detail. Every line has a purpose - nothing is accidental or left to chance. Because the book is all about looking and enjoying, it is lavishly illustrated.
The Complete Etchings of Rembrandt: Reproduced in Original Size