Rembrandt’s etchings: an Art review

Originally written on 2005, this article is being re-published here, with a few adaptations, including a few linked topics of interest.
This is NOT a translation, though, since it has been written directly in English.
A Memorable Experience in Arts
Some years ago, precisely on 2002, the citizens of Brasilia (Brazil’s administrative capital) had a quite rare opportunity to see, for the very first time in Brazil, an exhibition of Rembrandt Van Rijn’s etchings which compiled 83 works in total, of the Dutch-born artist (1603-1669).
The event, entitled Rembrandt and The Art of Print (‘Rembrandt e A Arte da Gravura’) and performed at the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil in Brasilia and also São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Recife, was organised by the Netherlands’ Rembrandt House Museum (established in Amsterdam) and brought to  the Brazilian audience a unique experience to view a careful selection of the artist’s most significant works in terms of etching techniques. Although being remembered mostly by his paintings nowadays, Rembrandt was also one of the greatest engravers of his time – a time when Engraving was as much valued form of Art as Painting.
The etching selection shown in the event demonstrated how Rembrandt did innovate the techniques of such craft, by emphasizing the use of pictorial effects more that line drawing itself, on his prints. The exhibition included a vast aspect of the subjects striven by the artist, from landscapes and allegories to portraits and nudes.
The exhibition had also shown Rembrandt’s influence on other artists both from his time and from recent times. Alongside to his own selection, an additional show has compiled 40 works collected from several influenced artists like Picasso, among others.
To sum up, the event should be considered as one of the most remarkable Art happenings of the year of 2002, in my memories. It surely has brought, not only for me but for every spectator, an immensely vivid experience of gazing at a compilation of Rembrandt’s true innovative geniality in the art of Etching and Engraving, which remains as one of the major references in Art History, of all times.


© Iracema Brochado