Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (1606−1669) ranks as
one of the greatest artists of all time. He is renowned for his atmospheric
paintings that are often deeply humane and moving. But Rembrandt made not only
paintings, he also produced many prints. Each one of these is a work of art in
its own right, sometimes small in size, but always with great visual richness.
Looking at them closely, one discovers an entire world in black and white.
During his life and in later
decades, Rembrandt was mostly known for his pioneering prints, creating more
than three hundred etchings at a time when the rapidly urbanising Dutch
Republic became the preeminent European centre of protestantism, trade and the
arts. After his death, Rembrandt remained an artists’ artist for two centuries;
Rembrandt’s present-day fame and importance rest on the rebellion against
classical ideals, the artist’s innovative approach to etching, and his
empathetic depiction of different peoples, be they burghers, beggars, or the
The exhibition at the National
Gallery of Slovenia presents 59 original works from the collection of the
Rembrandt House Museum in Amsterdam. It brings together 43 of
Rembrandt’s prints and two of his etching plates and 14 prints by the contemporaries and later artists that
were inspired by the Old Master, such as James Abbott McNeill Whistler and Pablo Picasso.
The exhibition is coming to a city
and public that is very receptive to printmaking. Whereas in other countries
this medium is regularly neglected, in Slovenia it receives more formal
attention, as seen, for instance, with the Ljubljana Biennial of Graphic Arts
and the excellent printmaking school of the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in
Ljubljana. The overview of the master’s influence is complemented
by 10 works from the collection of the National Gallery. Martin Johann Schmidt,
Ivana Kobilca and Zoran Mušič are featured, among others. This will allow you
to familiarise yourself not only with Rembrandt’s exceptional printmaking, but
also with his impact on later generations.
view are several of Rembrandt’s most famous prints, including The Shell, which is his only still life
etching, five self-portraits, the influential print The Three Crosses and two phases of the motif Christ Presented to the People – Rembrandt is known for the changes
he made on the printing matrix during printing cycles of the same motif. These
sheets allow us to track the alterations in details, figures and the
The master’s works are arranged according to his
preoccupations, such as ‘After Life’, ‘Light and Dark’ and ‘Shaping a
Character’. You will be guided through Rembrandt’s approach to
storytelling, and how he first made and then merged character studies, genre
scenes and backgrounds to create enthralling tales that still move us with
their message of love, faith and hope.
An exhibition project by
Narodna galeria, Ljubljana and Museum Rembrandthuis, Amsterdam
Barbara Jaki, Milou Halbesma
Jochem van Eijsden, Epco Runia
Head of the project
Tina Buh, Anne Roos
Owners of exhibits
SDH - DUTB, d. d.
This exhibition came about as a close collaboration between the National Gallery of Slovenia and the Rembrandt House Museum.
The project was supported by
26 April – 30 July 2023
National Gallery of Slovenia