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Connoisseurship and the Investigation of Materiality: Four “Rembrandt” Drawings in Weimar*

Thomas Ketelsen , Carsten Wintermann , Christien Melzer , Georg Dietz , Uwe Golle and Oliver Hahn

Published online:

29 Nov 2021



The aim of this paper is to present the productive interplay of connoisseurship and material analysis when dealing with drawings by Rembrandt – or previously attributed to him – in the collection of the Klassik Stiftung Weimar. This concerns the more precise determination of the drawing materials used and the reconstruction of the genesis of the drawings discussed. The material analysis allows us to decide whether and how Rembrandt’s inks can be used to determine authorship at all. The “material turn” in drawing studies thus intervenes in the discussion about authorship and opens up a broader production aesthetic perspective. No longer the “style” but rather the handeling becomes the decisive criterion for answering the question “Rembrandt, or not?”

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