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    Rembrandt - Self Portrait at the age of 63

    Rembrandt – Self Portrait at the age of 63

    A magnificent late Rembrandt self portrait is on display at the Ulster Museum in Belfast until March 13 as part of the Masterpiece Tour organized by the National Gallery in London.  Rembrandt (1606–1669)  produced some 80 self-portraits – paintings, drawings and prints- over the course of his 40-year career. No artist before Rembrandt, and only a very few since, have made self-portraiture such a significant part of their life’s work. Self Portrait at the Age of 63, painted in the final year of the artist’s life, is among the very last works he finished. It is a work of sheer virtuosity: proof, if ever it were needed, that with maturity his talent had only become all the more profound.

    At the Ulster Museum the late Rembrandt is hung with a small group of seventeenth-century Dutch paintings from the Museum collection. These paintings are by artists whose work Rembrandt would have known, including Salomon van Ruysdael, Jan Symonsz Pynas, Jan van der Heyden and Nicolaes Maes.  When viewed together there is sense of entering Rembrandt’s world.

    The Masterpiece Tour reflects the National Gallery’s commitment to promoting the understanding, study and appreciation of its collection to as wide an audience as possible. A  Gallery painting  toured each year between 2014 and 2016. In 2016 Rembrandt’s Self Portrait at the Age of 63 opens at the Ulster Museum then goes to Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal; and Bristol Museum & Art Gallery.

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