Harn exhibits original prints by Rembrandt and others

The Rembrandt etching, “The Ship of Fortune,” is one of more than 100 original prints and works by Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn and other Dutch artists featured in the new exhibition, “Printmaking in the Age of Rembrandt,” which opens Tuesday at the Harn Museum of Art. (Courtesy of the Henry Melville Fuller Acquisition Fund)

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, February 4, 2013 at 10:30 a.m.

The Harn's newest exhibition is bringing 17th-century Netherlands to Gainesville.


‘Printmaking in the Age of Rembrandt'

What: Exhibition of more than 100 original prints by Rembrandt and his contemporaries
When: Tuesday through April 28
Where: Harn Museum of Art, 3259 Hull Road
Cost: Free
Info: 392-9826

Feb. 10: Gallery Talk — Elizabeth Ross, UF assistant professor of art history, discusses “Death, Darkness, and a Little Bit of Adultery” through prints that feature a range of themes and moods including war and death, nighttime and the transgressive passions of the gods, 3 p.m.
March 14: Museum Nights — Performances, art activities and tours centered around the exhibition, 6-9 p.m.
April 7: Gallery Talk — Dulce Roman, Harn curator of modern art, discusses a selection of her favorite works in the exhibition, 3 p.m.
April 20: Family Day — Take a family friendly tour of “Printmaking in the Age of Rembrandt” and then make a print of foliage arrangements, 1-4 p.m. (A donation of $2 per child or $5 per family is requested to participate in the art-making activity.)

“Printmaking in the Age of Rembrandt,” a new exhibition opening Tuesday at the Harn Museum of Art, features more than 100 original prints by 30 17th-century artists, including Rembrandt van Rijn, Hendrick Goltzius, Esias van de Velde and Jan Dirkszoon.

“It's a stunning exhibition that celebrates the achievements of great masters of the Dutch golden age,” says Dulce Roman, curator of the Harn's exhibit. “When people see (Rembrandt's) work, it's going to become clear he was one of the masters.”

The 1600s, Roman says, saw a wider need and accessibility of prints and other artwork.

“The rising middle class was interested in collecting prints,” she says. “Rembrandt and his contemporaries had a ready-made audience.”

Along with the pieces from the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, N.H., Roman added paintings from the Harn's own collection and various museums in Florida, including the Ringling Museum of Art, the Appleton Museum of Art and the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens. In the back of the exhibit, she added German, French, Italian and Swiss maps, books and paintings from University of Florida libraries.

Roman says she chose the additional artwork in the hopes that it would add to the idea of bringing the audience back to 17th-century Netherlands.

“You often find the same subjects in both the paintings and etchings,” she says. “Amsterdam at the time was the center for some of Europe's best artists. I wanted to show different artists approaching different themes in different ways.”

Kurt Sundstrom, who curated the original exhibit at the Currier Museum, says the prints put together for this exhibit are a true representation of Dutch life in the 17th century, an opportunity that few people ever have to explore.

In Manchester, he says, the exhibition was a success.

“Novices to the museum world really appreciated the quality of the artwork, and connoisseurs and scholars realized the quality of prints themselves,” he says. “Across the spectrum, it's very appealing.”

Sundstrom says Rembrandt, who lived from 1606 to 1669 and is known for such oil paintings as “The Night Watch,” served as an inspiration for other artists.

“If you talk to modern photographers or painters who focus on the human figure, they all refer back to Rembrandt. He could do what no artist could do: capture the spirit of the person,” Sundstrom says. “It's unglorified images of people as they are, not as they're supposed to be.”

Along with the paintings and prints, the Harn also will also provide visitors with magnifying glasses and a gallery guide.

“The guide will give people ideas of things to look for so they can look more closely at the amazing detail of everyday life in Rembrandt's work,” Roman says.

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