Cottage among Trees

Artist: Rembrandt (Rembrandt van Rijn) (Dutch, Leiden 1606–1669 Amsterdam)

Date: ca. 1650

Medium: Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, on paper washed with brown

Dimensions: 6 3/4 x 10 7/8 in. (17.1 x 27.6 cm); vertical strip 6 3/4 x 1 1/4 in. (17.2 x 3.2 cm) added by artist to the sheet at right.

Classification: Drawings

Credit Line: H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929

Accession Number: 29.100.939


Among Rembrandt's sketches of rustic farmhouses and cottages, this drawing is unusually finished in execution and formal in composition. Rembrandt drew the scene with fine pen lines of fairly even width. He applied wash sparingly and rendered the texture of the thatch roof with heavily inked strokes reminiscent of a drypoint burr. In so doing, he created a work related in feeling to his etchings. Rembrandt situated the cottage parallel to the picture plane and framed it symmetrically by adding at the right of the original sheet a strip of paper, on which he extended the tree branches, the fences, and the distant horizon. In its reinterpretation of Italian Renaissance principles of composition, this drawing reveals parallels with paintings Rembrandt made in the years 1648–50, most notably the Supper at Emmaus of 1648 (Musée du Louvre, Paris).