The ‘High Society’ exhibit in the Rijksmuseum chronicles age-old trends with more than thirty life-size portraits, a format which is rare to find especially in a public exposition of this kind. The museum in Amsterdam City loaned these full-length portraits of monarchs, wealthy people, and rich aristocrats from eleven different nations.
The curator of Rijksmuseum, Jonathan Bikker, is front and center of ‘High Society’, which exhibits the transmission of the life-size portraits, their popularity, and renewed interest over the years. The composition of the portraits displayed in the museum is full of nods to the world of fashion. The temporary exhibit starts with a double portrait of Hendry the Pious and his spouse Catharina.
The Renaissance painter Lucas Cranach painted that life-size portrait in 1514, but it is being hung as two works of art in the Rijksmuseum. In Catharina’s singular work, one can see the sword of the Duke of Saxony, but only in shades due to decades of aging and reproduction.
The curator of the museum puts the portraits in the exhibit around Rembrandt’s portraitures of Marten and Oopjen, which are being displayed to the public since the mid 1950’s. The lovers of fine arts to have taken a Rijksmuseum tour will be familiar with the private collections of the museum including Rembrandt’s portraits. This only goes to make the exhibition even more exciting alongside the help of a bilingual guide, who will be there to assist with navigation, to give trivia, and artist-related bibliography.
The brush strokes of Rembrandt is part of a restoration work, which began in 2016 and got finished in the recent past only to revive an interest in Renaissance art on Rijksmuseum tour. Even the portraits featured in the ‘High Society’ exhibit throws light to international fashion through the past four centuries. Displayed in the public expo in the Rijksmuseum are portraits of members of the high society clad in trousers and a series of fashionable clothes titled as ‘haute couture’.
The museum in Amsterdam will play a grand tribute to Rembrandt’s artworks in the next year and this particular exhibition starting from March 08 to June 03, 2018, serves as a prelude to that. It also commemorates the purchase of ‘Maerten Soolmans and Oopjen Coppit’ by Rijksmuseum and Louvre Museum two years ago.