Art Friday: Rembrandt

This is fun to watch - the making of an old painting by a Flashmob!
A nice way to meet Mr Rembrandt (not that you will meet him in this YouTube clip!)

Artist: Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijin
Born 15 July1606 - Died 4 October 1669

Rembrandt was born in Leiden on July 15, 1606 - his full name Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn. He was the son of a miller. Despite the fact that he came from a family of relatively modest means, his parents took great care with his education. Rembrandt began his studies at the Latin School, and at the age of 14 he was enrolled at the University of Leiden. The program did not interest him, and he soon left to study art - first with a local master, Jacob van Swanenburch, and then, in Amsterdam, with Pieter Lastman, known for his historical paintings. After six months, having mastered everything he had been taught, Rembrandt returned to Leiden, where he was soon so highly regarded that although barely 22 years old, he took his first pupils. One of his students was the famous artist Gerrit Dou.

Rembrandt produced many of his works in this fashionable town house in Amsterdam (above left). Purchased by the artist in 1639, when he was 33, it proved to be the scene of personal tragedy: his wife and three of his children died here. The house became a financial burden, and in 1660 Rembrandt was forced to move. A new owner added the upper story and roof, giving it the appearance it still bears. In 1911 the Dutch movement made it a Rembrandt museum -preserving it both as a shrine of a revered national artist and as an imposing example of 17th Century Dutch architecture.

In contrast to his successful public career, however, Rembrandt's family life was marked by misfortune. Between 1635 and 1641 Saskia gave birth to four children, but only the last, Titus, survived; her own death came in 1642- at the age of 30. Hendrickje Stoffels, engaged as his housekeeper about 1649, eventually became his common-law wife and was the model for many of his pictures.  His personal life, however, continued to be marred by sorrow. His beloved Hendrickje died in 1663, and his son, Titus, in 1668- only 27 years of age. Eleven months later, on October 4, 1669, Rembrandt died in Amsterdam.

Text taken directly from: 

The nightwatch
The Storm on the Sea if Galilee, 1633 - this beautiful painting was stolen in 1990 and is still missing.
Self portrait
The philosopher in meditation
The mill
The syndics of the drapers' guide
The artist in his studio
Self portrait


  1. Love the clip! :)
    Sometimes it amazes me how people who didn't know anything about modern technology etc could produce something that would last so long and still be intact. I wonder if today's art will keep as well as his did, or whether the fact that everything is mass-produced and emphasis is often on quantity (and the income generated by that quantity), rather than quality.
    This artwork is quite detailed. I like the stairs (although it's a bit darker than the paintings I usually favour), and I like the Storm at sea one. Too bad it got stolen like that! :(


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