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rembrandt part 2

Actually Part One is going to be about Vermeer but few of us will care about the distinction as long as you're not in Art Appreciation 101 or a museum curator.

The tornadoes chewed up some things pretty well around here, but I was not one of them, last night. And my too-expensive laptop has enough security circuits in it so it did not get fried when the lightning knocked out our power [so here I am this morning, YAY]. I hear the rain outside my window right now. Joy.

Rembrant van Rijn [1606-1669] made out okay as long as he had a rich wife. He bought this big house next door and bought a warehouse and employed lots of people --- his studio was the bigggest in the country. He painted this big canvas called The Nightwatch in 1642, accepted 'donations' from lots of citizens to sit for their portraits which he wanted to use in the crowd scene. From my guidebook: "Some of the influential people he depicted were not pleased. Each subject had paid 100 guilders, and some were unhappy at being shoved to the background. In response, Rembrandt told them where they could shove their complaints. Suddenly he received far fewer orders."

Heh, a man after me own heart.

He pussycatted around with his son's governess and fathered a daughter with his new maid. In 2008 in Holland this might be just fine, but after all this was only 1656 and the public got pissed off and he went broke, but he didn't care, moved to snarky new digs in The Jordaan, and painted "The Jewish Bride" in 1665.

This Jordaan is very much still there and it's pretty wild to this day, is my impression.

When I studied these Masters in Western Civ, we weren't told anything about where to shove rich clients and new maids. Guess I have to go there and stand in a museum or something, to get the full flavour.

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