Purchasing Rembrandt Christ Crucified Between two Thieves Original Etching

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   As I mentioned in my previous Blogs , Buying Old -Modern masters Works on line is NOT for some one not prepared with his or here’s own research . Case in Point .

As the collector OR possible recipients of the sale , lets start with the established data on the work , .

All Major Works in Print making by a nearly all print maker are found in the THE Catalog Raisonné ( cataloged collection of the artists works , with data like the measures , medium used etching , dry point , mezzo tint and so forth .The information referring to editions , publishers , states and copies are mentioned in the case of Rembrandt’s Etchings.

A good start is obtaining the data from ;

Biörklund, George, Rembrandt’s Etchings: True and False, 1968.

Listed and illustrated as catalog raisonné no. BB 41-2. and in two states .

This and Bartsch. The Illustrated Bartsch , and Hind, Arthur. A Catalogue of Rembrandt’s Etchings , are thee toold many museums and galleries will refer to with the documentation .

In this case , The two states as as described as ;

Etched by the Master in 1641, Biörklund tell us there are TWO States of the impression . White & Boon State II (of II); Hind State II (of II).

The First State ;

Left arm of the cross has a square end which touches the oval border ,There are NO Diagonal lines…in the shaded area on the Cross between Christ Head and the scroll. According to many Scholars including Nowell-Usticke this work is an uncommon print with approximately 125-225 known impressions .
Impression of this state can be found in The British Museum and one can be found at the well respected Masterworks in Oakland Hills California .

The Second State ;

The end of the arm is rounded and does NOT touch the border , Dark Shadows much strengthened with close shading and diagonal lines added to cross .

Either Catalogs mentions the earlier publisher of the works. Is the second State of the work a Revision Of the Work by Rembrandt OR a alteration added by the printer-publisher ? In most cases as more well printed plates of Rembrandt’s works were printed and shown signs of wear to the copper , a printer-publisher WILL re etch the work to attempt to bring back a better quality impression .

Once you have The work is a etched work ( after checking the Measurements of the plate .generally to keep in mind there are some excellent etched work AFTER Rembrandt . These were some time etched by the Students of Rembrandt to learn the craft . (others like the Durand’s will be slightly smaller than the original in the Plate Marks .

In this case , the work is listed as only listed as a early publication , Most agree BEFORE any of Bason’s editions of the 1750’s or later . This work was never published by them since they did nit have the procession of the plate .

There is a known edition of this impression , published in 200 etchings in 1816. Location of this copper plate is not recorded and have either been lost or destroyed.

Two Etched Copies are known ;

The first etched in the Same direction slightly incorrect size

The Second is etched in REVERSE direction by Novelli

Let travel On

OK now you have decided if the work is a etched work executed by Rembrandt , let see what to expect to pay for such a wonderful work .

Lets start now with my favorite approach , “Google ” Rembrandt Christ Crucified Between Two Thieves ” . I than like to click on “shopping” and lets see what is available . YES Price comparing . Do keep in mind many Print dealers will not post prices ( you will see P O R ) ; Price on request .

“Rembrandt Christ Crucified Between Two Thieves ” listed by one Internet dealer at $ 8, 950.00
The first state .

“Rembrandt Christ Crucified Between Two Thieves ” listed by one Internet dealer at $ 12, 000.00
The first state .

The remaining one are Second State

“Rembrandt Christ Crucified Between Two Thieves ” listed by one Internet dealer at $ 2,000.00

There is one that is posted as ORIGINAL but is NOT

image the same BUT the plate mark is square and the original work is a oval plate mark

The seller is asking ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… $ 2,500.00

OK Now let see what this is selling at in the Auction World where any one can purchase .

One of my best best site ( by Internet subscription and if you choose to use this often) is well worth the yearly fee ;Gordon Print Prices and Most Public Libraries will have the printed issues of this at a good public Library in the Fine Arts section . I also recommend “Christies Lot Finders ” and going to the “Sold search ” Live Auctioneers ” also can be of help BUT more Limited to what was sold at there own auction site and NOT a real reflection of the Art Market . Do keep in mind the date of the sale , economy , auction location and if they are in fact “FINE ART AUCTIONS ” and with a well established reputation of selling fine Art .

Here is a sample and range of the inter national prices from all International Auction Houses for both the early states and second states .

REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves 12/03/96 2,269 Sold B79;H79;HD173;BB41-2 129
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plat 05/03/07 8,400 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79I/II 75
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An oval plate 04/25/12 5,000 Buy In B79;BB41-2;H79II/II 104
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 06/18/09 1,440 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79 35
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 10/31/08 1,200 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79 163
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 05/01/08 5,040 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79II/II 229
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 05/01/08 2,400 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79II/II 231
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two thieves:an oval plate 03/26/07 1,890 Sold B79 10
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:An oval Plate 12/05/06 26,063 Sold B79;HD173 200
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 05/04/06 2,070 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79II/II 172
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two thieves:An Oval Plate 11/03/05 11,500 Sold B79;BB41-2II/II;H79II/II 67
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 05/05/05 5,520 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79II/II 63
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 11/06/03 7,000 Buy In B79;BB41-2I/II;H79 71
REMBRANDT Christ Crucified between the Two Thieves:An Oval Plate 05/01/03 7,475 Sold B79;BB41-2I/II;H79 18
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 11/07/02 1,725 Sold B79;BB41-2II;H79II 334
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 07/01/02 1,438 Sold B79 36
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 05/02/02 6,210 Sold B79;H79I/II 270
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 11/09/00 2,070 Sold B79;BB41;H79 205
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 11/09/00 10,925 Sold B79;BB41;H79 211
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 05/24/00 963 Sold B79;H79II;S79III 139
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 11/25/99 392 Sold B79 4161
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 11/11/99 1,495 Sold B79;BB41-2;H79 127A
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 05/27/99 1,334 Buy In B79;H79 87
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 05/03/99 3,450 Sold B79;H79;HD173;BB41-2 29
REMBRANDT Christ crucified between the two Thieves:an oval Plate 04/16/99 6,450 Buy In B79;S79II;H79;NU79II 191

Now that you are completely either enlightened OR Confused . There are many factors to consider with the prices . At Auction the sale price DO NOT included taxes , buyers premium ( usually 15 – 20 percent depending on the terms at that auction house ) or shipping and keep in mind in the disclaimers …ALL SALE FINAL and SOLD AS IS .

Checking the prices on other on the ” E Bay Sites ” , often these will be both at Whole Sale and inflated Retail-Gallery Prices . Not all sellers there or any where else are professionals . I personally know many good Print Dealers selling on All the E Bay Sites Internationally and do offer some good opportunities to find and acquire some very Fine Old Masters . I have also found such treasures in local Consignment Shops , Estate Sales , flee market and other unusual places .

For many these works are not catch any one attentions UNLESS you know what they are .” There are those that refers to these as Pictures or Book pages ” with no knowledge these being Original Prints by some of the most cherished and collectors works of Master Works on paper

Like any sport ,” The Thrill of the Hunt is as important as finding the Catch “

Now you have decided if what your budget allows you to spend and what state you MUST have , the opportunities are offers a great adventure and opportunity to understand the complexities and challenges that collecting OLD Masters Prints and the passion that i my self have personally love and been inspired with for the past 45 years .

                                            James Stow & Anthony Yau

                                         Candlewood-Yankee Fine Arts

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