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The Dramatic Image: Baroque Prints of the 17th Century


Rembrandt van Rijn (1606–1669), one of the supreme figures in the history of painting, also holds a special place in the history of printmaking. No other artist except Albrecht Dürer (German, 1471–1528) devoted so much of his time and creativity to the refinement of the graphic arts. Rembrandt’s printed oeuvre, which spanned a major portion of his artistic career, began in the 1620s while he was living in Leiden and continued until 1661, eight years before his death in Amsterdam. During that time he made over three hundred etchings. Even though Rembrandt gained early prominence as a painter, it was his prints that spread his fame.Drama is one of the core elements of Baroque art and Rembrandt was a master of creating artworks that expressed the essential dramatic moment.