Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (Leiden, 15 July 1606 - Amsterdam, 4 October 1669) was a Dutch painter, etcher and draftsman. He is generally regarded as one of the greatest painters and etchers in European art, and as the most important Dutch master of the 17th century. Rembrandt produced a total of about three hundred paintings, three hundred etchings and two thousand drawings. His work belongs to the baroque and is visibly influenced by caravaggism, although he never went to Italy. His remarkable control of the play with light and darkness, often using sharp contrasts ( clair-obscur ) to enter the audience into the performance, led to lively scenes full of drama. Rembrandt's oeuvre is used by art historians [source?] divided into five periods, starting with the Leiden period (1625-1631). From about 1629 onwards, as an artist, in which Rembrandt began to work with contrasts and his interest in light treatment, austerity began to take effect after 1640. In the 1650s, brush strokes are clearly visible and the colors richer.
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