(Harmenszoon van Rijn) was born on July 15, 1606,
in Leiden, Holland. Even before his 30th birthday
he had become quite famous for his artistic excellence.
The classical Dutch master was known worldwide not
only for his dramatic paintings but also for his engravings,
noted for their intricate detail and delicate tones.
However, despite his financial success as an artist,
art dealer, and teacher, his leanings towards an extravagant
lifestyle eventually forced him to declare bankruptcy
in 1656. An inventory of Rembrandts complete
accumulation of art and antiquities, presented in
auction to pay his debts, showed the broadness of
his varied collections.
Rembrandt sold approximately 100 engraved plates to
a distinguished European family. The condition of
the sale being that not even one of his engravings
was to be reprinted until the duration of a full century
had passed after his death. This was a binding agreement
and was properly adhered to by the family.
The end results of the auction, which included the
sale of his house, were unfortunately disappointing.
Despite all this though, throughout his career, the
artistry in Rembrandt's work never diminished.
Rembrandt died in 1669, many of his later works had
been destroyed or canceled yet there still remained
this significant collection of 100 plates still capable
of producing excellent impressions.
For close to a century (1669-1767) the location of
the bulk of Rembrandt's surviving plates seemed shrouded
in mystery, however, through the passage of time these
plates began to surface and were subsequently reprinted.
Eventually, through use, by the mid 1800's these too
had become diminished in clarity as had most of Rembrandt's
by his deep admiration for the earlier work of Rembrandt,
Amand Durand, a master engraver, born in France in
1831, decided to remedy Rembrandt's faded plates with
his own skill. He studied and researched all available
collections, then spending the major part of his life
duplicated exactly 347 of Rembrandt's surviving engravings
onto new copper plates. These new plates were created
achieving great quality through Durand's own renowned
Amand Durand published a complete portfolio of very
fine reproductions showing all of the 'After Rembrandt'
So, in essence, history here reveals to us a genius
duplicating a genius two centuries later.