Old masters enthusiasts from the Netherlands are about to meet a great couple. Rembrandt van Rijn’s two previously unidentified portraits will be considered. The tiny eight-inch-tall paintings, signed and dated 1635, were discovered in a private collection in the United Kingdom.
They feature affluent plumber Jan Willemsz van der Pluym and his wife, Jaapen Carels. The pair was connected to Rembrandt by marriage and came from a well-known family in the Dutch city of Leiden.
The two paintings, which will be auctioned at Christie’s London Old Masters Part I, are predicted to sell for between $6.25 million and $10 million. Jan and Jaapen had bought the garden next to Rembrandt’s mother in Leiden the year the portraits were created.
Karel van der Pluym was born to their son Dominicus van der Pluym and Cornelia van Suytbroec, a distant cousin of the artist. The sitters’ family kept the paintings until 1760, when Marten ten Hove, the great-grandson of Jan and Jaapen, passed away.
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The portraits then traveled to Warsaw, where they were placed in Count Vincent Potocki’s personal collection, before spending a brief period in the custody of Baron d’Ivry in Paris starting in 1820. The last known specialist collector who owned the pieces was James Murray, 1st Baron Glenlyon.
In June 1824, Glenlyon used Christie’s to put both pieces up for auction. The Christie’s listing said they were “Rembrandt—very spirited and finely colored.” The present portrait owners’ ancestor purchased them approximately 200 years ago, and the family has owned them ever since.
The paintings have been brought back to the auctioneer after undergoing thorough scholarly research and scientific analysis at the Rijksmuseum in the Netherlands, giving purchasers an up-close view at the towering Dutch painter’s interpretation of his near relatives.
Henry Pettifer, international deputy chairman of Old Master’s paintings at Christie’s, said in a statement: “This is one of the most exciting discoveries we have made in the Old Masters field in recent years and we are delighted to bring this pair of portraits by Rembrandt to auction this summer, almost 200 years after they were last seen in public.”
“Painted with a deep sense of humanity, these are amongst the smallest and most intimate portraits that we know by Rembrandt, adding something new to our understanding of him as a portraitist of undisputed genius.”
Recently, CNN shared a Tweet related to the Rembrandt Portraits Was Found, let’s see what they say about it:
A pair of unknown and “exceptionally rare” portraits by Rembrandt have been discovered in a private collection in the UK https://t.co/9XnPm1HCgP
— CNN (@CNN) May 15, 2023
Christie’s will exhibit the portraits from June 10 through June 14 in New York and June 21 through June 24 in Amsterdam. The two will then be on display at Christie’s London from July 1 through 6 as a part of the Classic Week pre-sale exhibit, with bids being accepted at the Old Masters Part I sale on the final day of the event.
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