This week in ‘Rembrandt’s Amsterdam’ we’re leaving the current city borders to the Spaarndammerdijk, between Amsterdam and Harlem. In this etching by Rembrandt we can see a striking obelisk-like edifice on the left. This ‘obelisk’ has been identified as the boundary stone that marked the limits of the city’s jurisdiction. This is one of the few etchings Rembrandt made on the west side of Amsterdam. The stone was shorter in the first state of the etching; in the second state the obelisk was lengthened to extend beyond the scene. Traces of the original top can still be seen.
This etching is part of the exhibition Rembrandt, the etcher. Highlights of the Rembrandt House Museum. The Rembrandt House Museum owns one of the most important collections of Rembrandt prints in the world. Rembrandt produced around three hundred prints in all. A selection of highlights is currently on view in this exhibition.
Rembrandt, Landscape with a obelisk, c. 1650. Etching and drypoint, state II (2). The Rembrandt House Museum, Amsterdam.