Shocking Discovery of an altered Rembrandt via X-ray technology

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Rembrandt’s Susannah among Elders

Berlin’s Gemäldegalerie announced they’ve made a shocking discovery about the museum’s Rembrandt masterpiece Susanna and the Elders(1647). An X-ray analysis of the oil painting has revealed that the it had at one time undergone extensive alterations.

According to art restorer Claudia Laurenze-Landsberg, who conducted the analysis, noticed tiny pigments on the canvas that didn’t exist in the 17th century. What’s more, some parts of the painting were in a style that she didn’t recognize as Rembrandt’s. She found out that in the 18th century large parts of the painting were simply painted over, and entire sections were washed out using solvents and re-painted in a more modern, light shade.

The culprit is believed to be the English painter and collector Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792) who collected Rembrandt and had a soft spot for old painting techniques. According to researchers at the Gemäldegalerie, Reynolds, who was known to frequently alter paintings in his possession, owned Susanna at the time that the alteration occurred. This assertion was supported by the Reynolds Research Project in the UK.

According to museum director Bern Lindemann, “This was a pretty radical alteration. Only the figures correspond to the version of the painting that Rembrandt finished.” One can only speculate on what Reynold’s motives might have been. “Clearly he thought the painting was in need of quite an improvement,” Lindemann said.

 

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3 thoughts on “Shocking Discovery of an altered Rembrandt via X-ray technology

  1. that man had a highly developed sense of worthiness to say the lease. what man in his right mind would go to the expense of owning a painting and then altering it. I can see painting a likeness of it but to completely destroy sections and repaint an original. I guess that’s one way to have ones work in galleries.

    1. CRAZY RICH PEOPLE DO CRAZY RICH THINGS. THEY HAVE NOTHING BETTER TO DO THAN BE IMPRESSED WITH THEIR OWN ARROGANCE.Certianly surprised me, but that’s what you get for being among the 1%, it really wasn’t Downton Abbey.

      Best,

      Elizabeth

  2. There has also been a false Rembrandt who surfaced some 15 years ago in Montréal, which we haven’t heard from since. But its owner could well be still working underground to find a dumb purchaser for it. Buyers beware!

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