Created in 1630
Size: 2.8" x 2.36" (71 x 60 mm)
Very good, well-inked impression of this extremely scarce etching, with partial watermark
Reference: Bartsch 10, BB 30-M, New Hollstein 30
In front of mirror: Rembrandt’s etchings of self-portraits
Self-portrait etchings are among the earliest that Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669) created, he was still in his early twenties and living in Leiden. The Self-portrait, Frowning belongs to a series of four etchings made in 1630, in which Rembrandt captured facial expressions of various emotional states, such as surprise, anger or mockery. Rembrandt used his own features to model the physiognomy of these human emotions.
Few other artists depicted themselves as regularly and with such variety and psychological insight as Rembrandt. He painted himself before the mirror on at least 40 occasions, and etched no fewer than 32 self-portraits in a career that stretched over three decades.
These works, not only demonstrate his virtuosity as an artist, but also served as character studies for his religious or historical paintings.
Although the artist moved away from these explicit studies of human emotion, his self-portraits after 1630 often display an ongoing interest in character and persona. In 1631 Rembrandt moved to Amsterdam and very quickly achieved acclaim as an artist and portraitist.
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