Night Watch used to decorate militia headquarters wall

13th March 2009, Comments 0 comments

Rembrandt’s most famous painting was part of a continuous wall decoration in Amsterdam militia headquarters in the 16th century.

AMSTERDAM – Rembrandt van Rijn's most famous painting, the Night Watch, and five other paintings were put up unframed on a single wall in the 16th century, showed research by an art historian.

Bas Dudok van Heel said The Night Watch formed part of a single continuous wall decoration in the then headquarters of Amsterdam's city militia on the Kloveniersburgwal canal. The other five paintings on the Kloveniersdoelen included works by Bartholomeus van der Helst and Govert Flinck.

After extensive research in the militia's archives, Dudok van Heel has also succeeded in naming the militia officers depicted in the Night Watch. Their names were on the painting, but it was not clear who was standing where.

In a report by AD, the art historian also discovered that the officers in the painting all lived in the centre of Amsterdam.

Dudok van Heel is also pleased that he can finally dispel the theory, as depicted in Peter Greenaway's film Nightwatching, that Rembrandt painted conspirators of a murder plot

"This is absolute rubbish,” said Dudok van Heel. 

Radio Netherlands / Nicola Chadwick / Expatica

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