Hendrik Albertus Kleijn (Dutch, 1860-1929)
Elizabeth Jacobs Bas/A Copy After Rembrandt or Bol
Titled and inscribed "Elizabeth Jacobs Bas./naar hit original/van Rembrandt/door Hendr Klyn" on the reverse.
Oil on canvas, 46 1/8 x 32 in. (117.0 x 80.7 cm), framed.
Condition: Lined onto a wood panel, retouch, craquelure, varnish inconsistencies.
Provenance: Property from the estate of A. Margaret Bok, Rockport, Maine.
N.B. The portrait on which this copy is based is in the collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The portrait has an interesting history. Although originally attributed to Rembrandt van Rijn (Dutch, 1606-1669), the portrait is now attributed to his talented pupil, Ferdinand Bol (Dutch, 1616-1680), c. 1640-45. By 1642, Bol had moved on from Rembrandt's atelier and set up his own studio in Amsterdam. During the next few years, his style resembled Rembrandt's so closely that many of Bol's portraits were later confused with those of Rembrandt.
There was also a popular engraving after the portrait, created by Charles Waltner (French, 1846-1925) and published by Boussod, Valadon & Cie in 1877. The text beneath the image on the engraving spells the sitter's name Elizabeth with a "z," while the more traditional spelling used by the Rijksmuseum is Elisabeth. The Rijksmusuem also leaves the true identity of the sitter somewhat in doubt.
The inscription that appears on the back of the panel was probably transcribed by the restorer who did the lining. Some of the Dutch words were likely copied incorrectly, such as "hit" instead of "het" and "original" in place of "origineel." This, and the general variations of Dutch spellings when transcribed to English, would account for the artist's name being recorded as "Klyn" rather than "Kleijn."
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