Rembrandt in a Heavy Fur Cap (full face), 1630

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Early in his career, Rembrandt catered to the popular demand for history paintings-high-minded narratives of biblical or historical scenes. These works were judged on how realistically the artist conveyed dramatic emotion. With that in mind, Rembrandt spent hours in front of the mirror making faces at himself and recording what he saw. Thus, while revealing as self-portraits, these head studies show Rembrandt's lifelong interest in exploring human expressions and making them integral to his work. Because copper was so expensive, he would sketch several heads on one plate and cut it apart, which is why these prints are so tiny. In an unprecedented program of self-portraiture, Rembrandt depicted his likeness at least 40 times in paintings and 31 times in prints.

Rembrandt in a Heavy Fur Cap (full face)
Artist Life
Accession Number
Catalogue Raisonne
Hind 56 os; B.16; M.17os; B-B 31-L; Holl. 16 os
Curator Approved

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