Is it…or isn’t it?

Rembrandt

Further to my blog post last week  it’s come to my attention that a fantastic Rembrandt self portrait, one of only three left in private hands, is coming up for sale at Sotheby’s in July.  This was a picture which previously was dismissed as being by the master but has now been reappraised. This follows what I was saying about copies….if that had been purchased during those years of limbo then someone would have bagged a bargain. As it is it’s offered with an estimate of £12-16 million – but it has been circulating in the market before this and was with a top old masters dealer in 1990 and I’m unsure how it was being offered back then. Here is Sothebys press release.

What is also interesting about this sale is the context. Far from being put off by the world events that engulf us this major work will be offered arguably at a questionable moment for the art market. In many ways it is a magnificent sign of confidence by both Sotheby’s and the vendor at a time when auctions are forced completely online and viewings are difficult. I’m sure it will be a successful sale and I wonder if it might become the highest price paid online for anything – Sotheby’s could make much of that.