Jan 9, 2007

Self-Portrait Drawing at a Window

Self-Portrait Drawing at a Window


Rembrandt van Rijn

(Dutch, 1606–1669)

Etching, drypoint, and engraving

Support: Beige(1) laid paper

Sheet: 17.3 x 14.5 cm (6 13/16 x 5 11/16 in.); Platemark: 15.6 x 12.9 cm (6 1/8 x 5 1/16 in.)

Gift of Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. 1934.350

Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein 22 (XVIII.10)

State: v/v


Did you know?

In order to show himself with the direct gaze that characterizes this self-portrait, Rembrandt translated a view seen while studying himself in a mirror.


In this late self-portrait—one of more than 80 created by Rembrandt van Rijn—the artist shows himself informally posed at a studio window. He uses a needle to draw into a copper etching plate and gazes directly at the viewer as if interrupted in the process of creating a work of art. The window provides the light required to complete this task, but it also reveals the isolation of art making by juxtaposing Rembrandt’s interior space with the expansive landscape and external world from which he has sequestered himself.

See also
PR - Etching
Type of artwork: 

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