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Rembrandts eerste Amsterdamse periode

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image of Oud Holland - Quarterly for Dutch Art History

In 1925 W. Martin published Pieter Lastman's painting Coriolanus and the Roman Women (Dublin, Trinity College). He read the date as 1622, which is stated in all subsequent publications. In the Lastman exhibition at the Rembrandthuis in 1991 the signature was transcribed as 'PLastman fecit A01625'. This reading was, albeit unnoticed, a new source of information about Rembrandt's debut. Lastman's importance as Rembrandt's teacher is known. His Coriolanus turned out to be a key work, as has been stressed by Schatborn and Schwartz. On the basis of this painting, Rembrandt's training stint with Lastman has been dated 1624-1625 (Haak, Van de Wetering, White). Broos favoured 1625-1626, contending that this is suggested by Rembrandt's paintings of those years. Rembrandt's status in Lastman's workshop evidently entitled him to sign his own work. This view is contradicted by Defoer, who deems it unlikely that work signed by pupils would have left the master's workshop. It now appears that this actually did happen. In the year that Lastman painted his Coriolanus (1625), Rembrandt signed his first biblical painting, The Stoning of St. Stephen. This work, and notably the History painting in Leiden, is, also according to Chr. Vogelaar, inconceivable without the example of Coriolanus. A series of pictures dating from 1625 and 1626 were painted under Lastman's supervision. Henceforth they will have to be assigned to Rembrandt's first Amsterdam period, although they were hitherto regarded as dating from his time in Leiden. In the 1630s and also towards the end of his life, Rembrandt bore witness to his admiration of Lastman. Rembrandt must have been in Amsterdam in 1625 and 1626. During his stay there he met Hendrick van Uylenburgh, who settled in Amsterdam in 1625. Rembrandt was in contact with him, invested in his business, moved into his house in 1631, met his niece Saskia there and fell in love with her. The year 1625 undeniably marked a turning point in the life of the Leiden painter who was to become a burgher of Amsterdam.


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