Rembrandt Van Rijn, Etching & Drypoint: Lieven Willemsz Van Coppenol, Writing-Master

Rembrandt Van Rijn, Etching & Drypoint: Lieven Willemsz Van Coppenol, Writing-Master

Description: An original Rembrandt Van Rijn Etching & Drypoint print.
c. 1658
Original etching, engraving and drypoint printed in black ink on laid paper.
A strong and clear 18th century impression of Bartsch’s sixth and final state, Usticke’s ninth state of eleven, New Hollstein’s eighth state of nine. Printed after the reduction of the plate but before the late retouching and rebiting.
Catalog: Bartsch 283 vi/vi; Hind 300; Biorklund-Barnard 58-F; Usticke 283 ix/xii; New Hollstein 306 viii/ix.

6 1/8 x 5 1/4 inches
Sheet Size: 9 3/8 x 7 inches

Lieven Willemsz van Coppenol (1599-1667) was the principal of the "French school" in Amsterdam until 1650. An important part of the curriculum in those days was calligraphy, and ordinary schoolmasters were among the most proficient practitioners of this art. When Coppenol suffered a kind of nervous breakdown and was prevented from continuing his work as a schoolmaster, he devoted himself altogether to calligraphy, becoming something of a fanatic about it. He traveled all over the country giving demonstrations and showing off his work, and he soon came to be a well known figure.

His fame was due in the first place to his capacity for self-promotion. Among his gimmicks was the commissioning of etched portraits of himself by famous artists (including Cornelis Visscher and Rembrandt) which he would send to as many poets as he could think of with the request to write poems of praise to him or his work. If they insisted upon it, he would even pay them.

Given this practice of Coppenol's, it would seem fairly certain that Rembrandt's etched portrait of him was commissioned. There is no evidence that the two men were friends, as is supposed in much of the older literature.

Dimensions: Image Size: 6 1/8 x 5 1/4 inches
Sheet Size: 9 3/8 x 7 inches
Framed Size: 21 x 19 5/8 inches
Artist or Maker: Rembrandt Van Rijn
Medium: Etching & Drypoint
Date: c. 1658
Condition Report: In excellent condition, printed on a sheet with small margins outside the platamark on all four sides.
Exhibited: Collections in which impressions of this same state can be found: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam; Baltimore Museum of Art; Kunstmuseum Basel; Kupferstichkabinett der Staatlichen Museen, Berlin-Dahlem; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Kunsthalle Bremen; Herzog Anton Ulrich Museum, Braunschweig; Cabinet des Estampes, Bibliothèque royale de Belgique, Brussels; Szépmüvészéti Museum, Budapest; Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge; Kunstsammlungen des Veste, Coburg; Statens Museum fur Kunst, Copenhagen; Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cracow; Graphischen Sammlung des Hessischen Lendesmuseums, Dahrmstadt; Gabinetto designi e estampe degli Uffizi, Florence; Graphische Sammlung des Städel Museums, Frankfurt-am-Main; Hamburger Kunsthalle; Prentenkabinet der Rijksuniversiteit, Leiden; Ermitage Museum, St. Petersburg; The British Museum, London; State Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow; Staatliche Graphische Sammlung, Munich; New York Public Library; The Morgan Library and Museum, New York; Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris; Fondation Custodia collection Frits Lugt, Paris; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Graphische Sammlung, Albertina, Vienna; Museum Narodoew Warszawie, Warsaw; National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; The Library of Congress, Washington D.C.; Kunstsammlungen zu Weimar.
Literature: Christopher White, Rembrandt as an Etcher: A Study of the Artist at Work, Yale University Press, New Haven & London, 1999, pp. 165-66; Erik Hinterding/Ger Luitjen/Martin Royalton-Kisch, Rembrandt the Printmaker, Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, Chicago & London, 2000, no. 89, p. 357 (ill.); Stephanie S. Dickey, Rembrandt: Portraits in Print, John Benjamins Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 2004, no. 168, p. 319 (ill.) Erik Hinterding, Rembrandt Etchings from the Frits Lugt Collection, Thoth Publishers, Bussum, 2008, no. 211a, vol. II p. 238 (ill.).
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