Self Portrait With Saskia Analysis

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The Self-Portrait with Saskia was created by the 17th century Dutch artist Rembrandt van Rijn in 1636 during the Northern Baroque period. The artwork is an three state etching, which is a printmaking process. Rembrandt is known for being the first to popularize the technique and typically used a soft ground allowing for him to “draw” freely. Rembrandt was high experimental and explored many effects such as different weights and colors of papers. The artwork was of both Rembrandt and his wife and was produced two years after their marriage. Both Rembrandt and his wife are clothed in historical clothing. Rembrandt is illustrated in a feathered beret and a fur-trimmed overcoat, on the other hand Saskia is illustrated in an old-fashioned veil. Rembrandt’s hat casts a shadow over his eyes, giving the artwork a sense of mystery to his countenance. Rembrandt only twice represented himself as a contemporary Amsterdam gentleman. Rembrandt produced about 75 self-portraits and illustrated himself in a variety of imagined roles. Not only is the Self-Portrait with Saskia one of many self-portraits, it’s also can be regarded as a marriage portrait or allude to the theme of love sourcing to the artist’s creativity. This is the only etching that Rembrandt made with his wife and himself together. They are depicted in half-length and seated around a table with a plain background. Rembrandt is illustrated dominating the etching with a serious expression allowing him to engage with the viewer.

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