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The Visitation
The Visitation

Photo ©2014, Detroit Institute of Arts

The Visitation

Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn(Dutch, 1606-1669)

Staff Picks

“Rembrandt is celebrated as a painter of expressive light, and in this work he concentrates a burst of super-natural light on Mary, newly pregnant with Jesus, and her cousin Elizabeth, who will soon give birth to John the Baptist. The light illuminates the central figures and suffuses the picture with a sense of spirituality. The peacocks at lower left symbolize Jesus' immortality based on a myth that peacock flesh never decays.”

Graham W. J. Beal, Director, President and CEO

Date
1640
Medium
Oil on cedar panel
Dimensions
22 1/4 x 18 7/8 in. 56.5 x 47.9 cm Framed : 33 x 30 x 4 1/2 in.
Department
European Painting
Classification
Paintings
Credit
City of Detroit Purchase
Accession No.
27.200
Provenance
(?) Amsterdam, Collection of the artist (cited in 1656 bankruptcy inventory of Rembrandt's collection); Goes, The Netherlands, Collection Hieronymus van der Straten (d. 1662), magistrate and burgomaster of Goes; Vienna, Collection Prince Eugene of Savoy (1633-1736); Collection Maria Anna Victoria of Savoy (Prince Eugene's niece and heir); Turin, Collection Carlo Emanuele III of Savoy, King of Sardinia (acquired with the bulk of Prince Eugene's collection from Maria Anna Victoria of Savoy in 1741) and by descent to Victor Amadeus III, Carlo Emanuele IV (abdicated in 1802) and (?) Victor Emanuele I; Probably removed by the French to Paris probably about 1798 but possibly as late as 1802; Paris, art market (R. Lerondelle-dealer-before 1808); Brought to England by the dealer Sebastian Érard in 1808; London, Grosvenor House, Collection of Robert, 2nd Earl of Grosvenor, later Marquess of Westminster (died 1846); By descent, London, Grosvenor House, Collection The Dukes of Westminster to Hugh Richard Grosvenor, Duke of Westminster who sold it in 1913; Halton Manor, England, Collection Alfred Charles de Rothschild (acquired from the Duke of Westminster in 1913); Collection Almina, Countess of Carnarvon (inherited from Alfred de Rothschild-according to Michael Hall); London & New York, M. Knoedler & Co., Ltd. (1924-1927, acquired via Colnaghi's in 1924) from whom acquired by the DIA in 1927.
Keywords
oak, oil, paint, panel, religion, wood, christian
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