Thursday, May 19, 2011

Rembrandt van Rijn - The Greatest Painter

I took great umbrage at Tam's suggestion that we "have guns o the brain."  Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.  Unlike some people I know, we happen to be a blog of varied and eclectic interests.  Case in point: the following painting entitled Aristotle Contemplating the Bust of Homer, has been described as portraying the greatest philosopher thinking about the greatest story-teller while wearing the medallion of the greatest conqueror, rendered by the greatest painter.

More in keeping with some of the regular themes of our blog is The Polish Rider. It's absolutely hypnotic. Go to New York City and see for yourself.


  1. I love fine art. Laci the Chinese Crested has a particularly lovely example on that blog of 2nd Amendment early American art that should be included, although a slightly more minor masterpiece than the Rembrandt.

    But then I find Laci to be a person of extremely cultured taste and refined aesthetics.Both in the philosophical sense, and the more archaic meaning of aesthetic.

    No surprise that Laci was familiar with my avatar, and had seen it in person at the Met. I wonder how much time some of your commenters spend in places like museums, or libraries, much less a science lab? Not nearly enough, would be my guess.

  2. John Singer Sergeant. One of the greatest American portrait or society painters of the late 19th /early 20th century.
    I have many opinions as to who is the greatest painter. I could never say anyone was the greatest, but Rembrant was truly one of them. All great art is a product of the time that shaped it.

  3. Another connoisseur! C'est vrais, monsieur. Vous avez raison.

  4. I don't want to labor the point, but take Dutch painters of the renaissance, which would arguably include Rembrant. As the science of optics, the language of geometry and perspective became more fluent, we see major advances in the ability to render, to accurately portray light, to use these advances in knowledge to create art which incorporated these ideas into a more compelling emotional experience.
    Who's the better painter? When you have to consider the technique, the different temperments and the concerns of the individual artist?
    Rembrandt's emotional action...the baroque interplay of lights and darks, the violence, the drama. Late Renaissance Baroque emotionalism in full flower, or the earlier placid frozen world of light, reflection, perspective of Jan Van Eyck?
    Both show us amazingly different worlds rendered on a one dimensional canvas.
    But who's better?

  5. Rembrandt is my man, especially that I have finally found my avatar.

    And that should keep 'em guessin'.

    Avatar: The Polish Rider
    Residence: Rome, Italy
    Birth place: New Jersey, USA
    E-mail address: Hotmail UK

    There's more but none that I want to share.

  6. I have to admit, I had a real emotional epiphany last year at a show of prints by Rembrant. It was at of all places, the Toledo Museum of Art.
    There were the same prints in multiple stages of creation, as he pulled copies from the plates as he was working on them.
    I spent quite a few years working with fine art printmaking techniques and in the printing industry.
    It was a wonderful show and rarely have I ever felt so much drama, theater on a sheet of rag paper covered with ink.
    But only a few weeks earlier, I was at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC viewing a show of Georges Seurats Graphite work on paper and I felt much the same thing....
    Seurat was a revolutionary painter, he invented the techniques of impressionistic pointiillism, and played with dadaistic pseudo science but his drawings are another matter all together. Sheer genius.

  7. microdot, clearly you are a kindred spirit with Laci and I when it comes to appreciating art!