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Lieven Willemsz Van Coppenol, Writing-Master

$9,800.00 $4,900.00

Rembrandt Van Rijn
Lieven Willemsz Van Coppenol, Writing-Master
Etching & Drypoint
c. 1658

An original Rembrandt Van Rijn Etching & Drypoint print.

c. 1658

Original etching, engraving and drypoint printed in black ink on laid paper.

A strong and clear 18th century impression of Bartsch’s sixth and final state, Usticke’s ninth state of eleven, New Hollstein’s eighth state of nine. Printed after the reduction of the plate but before the late retouching and rebiting.

Catalog: Bartsch 283 vi/vi; Hind 300; Biorklund-Barnard 58-F; Usticke 283 ix/xii; New Hollstein 306 viii/ix.

6 1/8 x 5 1/4 inches

Sheet Size: 9 3/8 x 7 inches

Lieven Willemsz van Coppenol (1599-1667) was the principal of the “French school” in Amsterdam until 1650. An important part of the curriculum in those days was calligraphy, and ordinary schoolmasters were among the most proficient practitioners of this art. When Coppenol suffered a kind of nervous breakdown and was prevented from continuing his work as a schoolmaster, he devoted himself altogether to calligraphy, becoming something of a fanatic about it. He traveled all over the country giving demonstrations and showing off his work, and he soon came to be a well known figure.

His fame was due in the first place to his capacity for self-promotion. Among his gimmicks was the commissioning of etched portraits of himself by famous artists (including Cornelis Visscher and Rembrandt) which he would send to as many poets as he could think of with the request to write poems of praise to him or his work. If they insisted upon it, he would even pay them.

Given this practice of Coppenol’s, it would seem fairly certain that Rembrandt’s etched portrait of him was commissioned. There is no evidence that the two men were friends, as is supposed in much of the older literature.

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