Rembrandt – Night Watch

Rembrandt’s “The Night Watch” – In the News

A giant new scan of Rembrandt’s famous painting is making the rounds in the art news world. It is generally accompanied with an illustration like this:

Kinda dark and dingy if you ask me. What good is fabulous resolution if you can’t really see it well?

The story in PopPhoto – shows a photo of the scan in progress:

Notice how much brighter the painting looks in this photo.

So which is it? Is the painting bright and spectacular or dark and dingy as in the provided images?

Might it really look closer to this:

So many photos on the web seem to suffer from the dark and dingy look. Why? Can somebody explain to me what is going on?

.:. © 2022 Ludwig Keck

About Ludwig

Lending a helping hand where I can. . . My motto: If it is worth doing, it is worth doing well.
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4 Responses to Rembrandt – Night Watch

  1. Such very historic paintings.

  2. Robin King says:

    Hi! ♥️ your blog!

    The few times I’ve used oils I’ve found cat hairs embedded in them later so I figured that some dust/debris would settle into (& be retained by) the goopy oil surface of any oil painting bec oils take time to dry thoroughly. Over centuries? A darkening.

    But maybe I was wrong and this is why they get murky:

    Wait. 717 gigapixels?? Yikes! Amazing.😳

    PS – Nearly everyone I run into on WP is younger than I am. Happy to find someone who probably isn’t! 🙃

    • Ludwig says:

      Thanks, Robin, I am an octogenarian, that does make me a senior citizen around here.
      My beef is not the darkening of paintings, which is real, but the excessive darkening in the images. When photos show the paintings with visitors, it becomes clear that the paintings are nowhere near as dark as the provided images.

  3. Pingback: Once again – a dingy museum image | This 'n That

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