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Course: Europe 1300 - 1800 > Unit 9

Lesson 4: Dutch Republic

Is it a genuine Rembrandt?

Who exactly painted Tobit and Anna in the Willem van der Vorm Collection? The panel was subjected to scientific analysis in 2010, and the conclusion was that it originated in Rembrandt's studio. But Jeroen Giltaij, curator, and Ernst van de Wetering, head researcher of the Rembrandt Research Project, do not agree on who actually wielded the brush.
Giltaij bases his opinion on intuition and traditional connoisseurship; Van de Wetering approaches the issue with the probability theory of the scientist Thomas Bayes. In this video, Ernst van de Wetering puts forward a series of arguments that support the idea Tobit and Anna was painted by the great master himself.
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Rembrandt? Yes, it has to be him! Video from ARTtube, video platform of Dutch and Belgian museums (source).
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Rembrandt? No, I don't recognize him! Video from ARTtube, video platform of Dutch and Belgian museums (source).

Want to join the conversation?

  • leaf orange style avatar for user Jeff Kelman
    It was amazing to learn in the first video that Rembrandt would paint over other artist's canvases in order to possibly save money...or perhaps for artistic purposes. I had never heard of an artist doing such a thing before that video. Was this done by any other artists?
    (5 votes)
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  • leafers seedling style avatar for user writersurprise
    The subject reminds me of myself wnen i get writters block. Does anyone else see this?
    (5 votes)
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  • old spice man blue style avatar for user Roy Bell
    Maybe somebody can help me. If Tobit and Anna is by Rembrandt then it's worth a fortune. If it's not then it's worth less. But in either case it's the same painting and of the same quality, good or bad. This suggests that attribution is more important than quality. This has always seems absurd but is the way the art market works. So if a pupil of Rembrandt produced a painting that was demonstrably better than Rembrandt it would be worth less. Why?
    (1 vote)
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