Thanks to the concerted efforts of devoted collectors, museum curators, and scholars, about 1,400 drawings by Rembrandt have been preserved and carefully catalogued.
Like other artists he drew preparatory studies far his paintings and prints, but he did not make many drawings of this type. Those executed as finished works, complete in themselves, are even rarer. Most of Rembrandt's drawings were made to satisfy an insatiable urge to record what he saw.
Although it was Rembrandt's practice to sign and date his paintings and etchings, he hardly ever inscribed his name on his drawings. Only about two dozen bear his signature.
The full catalogue of Rembrandt's drawings was published by Otto Benesch in the 1950s, then enlarged and edited by Eva Benesch in 1973. It contains around 1.450 items. In spite of problems of authenticity, it is widely used today.
External link related to Rembrandt's drawings: Rembrandt's drawings.
|Summary of works by Rembrandt|
|New Testament subjects | until 1639 | 1640s | 1650-60s|
|Passion of Christ | Old Testament subjects|
|Mythological subjects | Historical subjects|
|Portraits | until 1632 | 1633-39 | 1640s | 1650s | 1660s|
|Group portraits | Self-portraits|
|Landscapes | Miscellaneous subjects|
|Paintings in the style of Rembrandt (not by Rembrandt)|
|Etchings | Drawings|