A self-portrait of Rembrandt delivered £ 14.5 million (£ 16 million) on Tuesday at an auction at Sotheby’s in London. It was estimated that the work would generate between £ 12-16 million.
There were six bidders in the painting, which is incidentally only 22 by 16 centimeters. Rembrandt made it when he was 26, in 1632. What is special is that the painting is only one of Rembrandt’s three self-portraits that is privately owned. This will remain so after the auction. Who the buyer is has not been disclosed.
Rembrandt expert Jan Six said on talk show on Tuesday On 1 also not knowing who the buyer is. He did hear from various sources what kind of collector the new owner is likely to be: “The idea is not that it is a faithful buyer of old masters, but someone from the modern corner. They call it a trophy buyer.”
Another striking feature of the painting is that Rembrandt depicted himself in neat clothing. Other self-portraits feature Rembrandt in ordinary clothes or in his painting tunic.
The last time a self-portrait of Rembrandt was auctioned was in 2003. That work yielded £ 6.9 million at the time. In total, Rembrandt made about a hundred self-portraits, not only paintings, but also etchings and drawings.