Rembrandt self-portrait discovered with x-ray technology

Last Updated: Dec 03, 2011, 15:20 PM IST

Zeenews Bureau

London: The art world is elated with the recent discovery of Rembrandt van Rijn’s self portrait. The unknown portrait was discovered beneath an oil painting through the latest x-ray technology.

Although faint and unfinished, it dispels doubts that it is indeed the picture of the 17th century Dutch artist.

The portrait had been hidden until now by the painting Old Man with Beard. Incidentally, the latter was regarded as copy by some art specialist since the 1960s and so the latest discovery is an important one.

The revelation was announced by an international consortium of scientists and art historians at the Rembrandt House Museum in Amsterdam, where the picture is display. The picture is actually a part of a private collection.

The discovery of the self portrait also confirms that the Old Man, an oil on panel, was painted by Rembrandt around 1630 right before he moved to Amsterdam. Here he made his name as painter of portraits with uncompromising realism.

In the past, x-ray and infrared studies had shown alterations to the composition of the surface painting, but it was unclear whether it had been reworked or whether there was anything beneath it.

The portrait was revealed through high-intensity x-rays developed by Joris Dik of Delft University and Koen Janssens of Antwerp University.