Rembrandt, 1652, etching and drypoint on laid paper
Overall: 3 1/4 x 6 7/8 in. (8.3 x 17.4 cm)
Gift of Jean K. Weil in memory of Adolph Weil Jr., Class of 1935, PR.997.5.101
In his second series of landscape etchings, Rembrandt was far more concerned with capturing the emotional atmosphere of the landscape than he was in representing every detail of his subject matter. Specifically, Landscape with a Haybarn and a Flock of Sheep serves to merge the peculiarities and banality of daily life in 17th-century Amsterdam with the characteristically rainy and cloudy Dutch weather, which, combined, function to illustrate the duality between the Dutch realms of the domestic and the natural. Three figures on the far left look toward the vast land that expands before them. A shepherd with his flock of sheep is buried with sketchy detail beneath, while other animals are situated in other areas of the work, the figural outlines of which are so incredibly generalized that they seem to fuse with their natural surroundings. Here, again, the Dutch weather is also prominently featured, the specifically hazy grayness casting a feeling of humidity, thickness, and fog that translates to both the emotional and tactile senses.