Rembrandt And Italy Essay

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Rembrandt is now universally considered one of the greatest painters who ever lived. This was not always the case. In his lifetime he was ranked below the Italians and certainly below his contemporary Rubens. Some considered him to be the greatest Dutch painter, but many would not have accorded him even this lower status. He started out in a very promising fashion, painting for the highest level of Dutch society, but became somewhat less fashionable over time, did not manage his finances well, and ended up filing for bankruptcy at the age of 50. He continued to make a decent living selling his work to discerning (mostly middle-class) patrons. His most important contribution in art history was that he was the teacher of Rembrandt and friend of Rembrandt in Amsterdam. He introduced Rembrandt to Italian high Renaissance art and helped to convince Rembrandt that it was not necessary to make the pilgrimage to Italy since there were so many wonderful collections of Italian paintings in the Holland to be seen. He himself had an impressive collection of Italian art works. Rembrandt Harmenszoon Van Rijn is now to be universally considered one of the greatest European artists who ever lived. In his lifespan he was positioned below the Italians and undoubtedly below his contemporary Peter Paul Rubens. Not only deemed as a great painter, Rambrandt was also an inspirational graphic artist and has never been outshined as an etcher. In fact, some 290 etchings, all anticipated as authentic pieces of art portrays his expert use of the drypoint and the distinctive jet black of many of his paintings were popular in his own time as well. The fact that Rembrandt never felt the need to go to Italy, or that he believed it unnecessary to go there is quite an interesting matter. While many of his predecessors ventured into Italy in hope to extend their knowledge in the training of art,

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