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Rembrandt as a Source for Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione
One artist of Rembrandt's own day who was heavily influenced by Rembrandt's prints was the Italian Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione. There are clear parallels, for example, between Rembrandt's Old man with a flowing beard, which is dated 1630, and Castiglione's etching Old man with flowing beard and cap, done in about 1650.
Between 1630 and 1638 Rembrandt produced a whole series of etched busts or half-figures of old men. He relished the challenge of using the play of light to capture the feel of the skin on a wrinkled face. This etching inspired the Italian artist Castiglione.
Castiglione had obviously studied Rembrandt's etching of an old man when he produced this etching. It is not only the subject matter that is the same. There are also similarities in the poses of the two figures and in the areas of light and shade. But there are differences too-in Castiglione's version, for example, it is much harder to distinguish between the old man's coat and the background.
Rembrandt as a source for Christian Wilhelm Dietrich
In the eighteenth century, Rembrandt’s graphic art was frequently imitated by artists in the German-speaking countries. The German artist Christian Wilhelm Dietrich (1712-1774) was inspired by one of Rembrandt’s genre scenes.
Rembrandt made a great many etchings of beggars or strolling musicians going from door to door. Here we see a man in a doorway giving a coin to a needy family. The perspective is accentuated by a few dominant lines in the doorpost and the drain.
Dietrich was one of the few German artists to draw inspiration from Rembrandt’s genre scenes. Rembrandt’s print of beggars at the door of a house was the source for this version by Dietrich. The man in the doorway and the woman with outstretched hand are clearly derived from Rembrandt’s print.
Rembrandt as a source for Pablo Picasso
There are many examples of modern artists who have drawn inspiration from Rembrandt's works-the foremost among them is undoubtedly Pablo Picasso.
In 1970 he created an etching of a theatre performance, based on Rembrandt's Christ presented to the people.
Standing on a dais outside a substantial building, the captive Christ is shown to a crowd below. Rembrandt drew this composition entirely with a drypoint needle.
By the time he started work on the sixth state, Rembrandt was no longer happy with the crowd gathered in front of the dais. Using a scraper, he erased that part of the picture and replaced the figures with two deep black arches, which could be the windows to a dungeon
Pablo Picasso, Le théatre de Picasso
1970, etching and aquatint
State 1 (5), Parijs, Musée Picasso
Picasso was inspired to create this print of a theatre performance by Rembrandt's print Christ presented to the people.
It is interesting to note that Picasso approached this work in the opposite direction from Rembrandt: the first state of his print is like the eighth state of Rembrandt's. In the next four states he added more figures, whereas Rembrandt took figures away as the work progressed through the different states.
Picasso took great liberties with his model. Rembrandt's episode from the Bible was transformed into a stage performance. All sorts of strange characters put in an appearance, many of them familiar from earlier works by Picasso. There are still some elements that unmistakably reflect Rembrandt's print-the rectangular stage, the two dark arches below it, the poses of some of the spectators at either side, and the costumes of some of the figures on the stage.