A self portrait of the Dutch painter Rembrandt has been discovered at a National Trust site, which could be worth up to an astounding £20million! The picture was discovered on the walls of Buckland Abbey in Devon, and after much examination by Rembrandt specialists, it has now been confirmed as personal painting of the old master himself.
Buckland Abbey is the former home of Sir Francis Drake, and is the only Rembrandt in the National Trust’s collection of over 13,000 paintings. The painting will now receive specialist cleaning, with further examinations planned to shed more light upon the origins of the painting. Rembrandt was one of the art world’s most famous self portraitists, with up to 50 paintings of himself already in existence. This latest discovery has been dated 1635, which would make the artist 29 at the time it’s conception.
The painting may be worth a LOT of money, but there is not much of a chance that the National Trust will sell it. It was first acquired 3 years ago from the estate of the late Lady Samuel of Wych Cross, who’s husband was a property developer who collected paintings. It looks like he may have picked this little number up without maybe knowing exactly what it was!
National Trust Curator of Paintings and Sculpture, David Taylor, said –
These latest investigations are incredibly exciting and important. The conservation work and technical analysis being undertaken over the winter will give us further confirmation regarding the picture’s authorship.’Rembrandt was one of the great artists of the so-called Dutch Golden Age. He produced a huge number of self portraits throughout his career, partly because he had a ready subject matter in himself through which he could develop his painting technique, but also because – as he was already famous – the finished images were highly desirable pictures for collectors.
The painting will remain at Buckland Abbey for the rest of the year, but will be taken away in 2014 for further investigations to be carried out. With a price tag of up to £20million, I can’t say I’m surprised! If you would like to help the National Trust, or even visit this amazing painting in Devon, why not purchase a membership card from our dedicated charity page? It’s a great way to visit.