Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Another downgraded Rembrandt

Picture: Getty
When I looked up this image to illustrate another post I noticed that the Getty now lists this picture as  'School of Rembrandt' . I'm sure it used to be listed as Rembrandt and Dou, which I thought was a bit optimistic. It's interesting how institutions change attributions from time to time without telling anyone (especially if it's a 'downgrade'). Shame there isn't more background on the Getty website, which doesn't give much information about its collection - although they at least make the images freely available. 


  1. Odd that it also is no longer identified as "Prince Rupert of the Palatine and his Tutor", an identification first convincingly made by Christopher Brown in 1983 following an 18th c. inscription and the painting's provenance and (as I thought) generally accepted. It has a pendant (of almost identical measures), also in the Getty, by Jan Lievens, depicting Rupert's elder brother Charles Louis with his Tutor Wolrad von Plessen. The princes are shown as Samuel and the young Alexander respectively. The boys, with their many siblings, were housed in the Prinsenhof in Leiden and the eldest sons were enrolled in Leiden University, which would explain the commission from Leiden painters. The pendant, too, was once attributed to Rembrandt, but there is an unmistakable Lievens monogram on it. One would indeed like to know what prompted the painting's downgrade and the change in subject identification.

  2. Thanks - yes, agreed. You'd think they'd want to explain such a significant shift of opinion. The pair were on display with the old identification when I was last at the Getty about 18 months ago.