Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn, Dutch (Leiden 1606 - 1669 Amsterdam)
Four Studies of Male Heads
Work Type
c. 1636
Persistent Link
Physical Descriptions
Brown ink and brown wash on cream antique laid paper
12.6 x 15.8 cm (4 15/16 x 6 1/4 in.)
Jonathan Richardson, Sr., London (Lugt 2183 and his mount). Thomas Hudson, London (Lugt 2432). John Knight, London, sold [through his sale, Phillips, London, July 19, 1841, lot 120]; to Charles Sackville Bale, London, sold [through Christie's, London, June 10, 1881, lot 2427]; to [Jeffrey?] Whitehead. [P. & D. Colnaghi, London]. Jonkheer H. Teixeira de Mattos, Vogelenzang. A. Berg, Portland, Oregon. [Paul Cassirer, Amsterdam, c. 1954]. [1] Frans Koenigs, Haarlem, sold [by his heirs through Sotheby's, London, November 20, 1957, lot 70]; to Abrams. [P. & D. Colnaghi, London c. 1960-1965]. [2] Mrs. Donald Methuen, London, sold [through Christie's, London, April 7, 1970, lot 124]; to [P. & D. Colnaghi, London]. Sold [through Christie's, New York, January 11, 1994, lot 385] [via Bob Haboldt]; to Maida and George Abrams, Boston (Lugt 3306), gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2018

[1] See Benesch 1954; listed as in Cassirer's possession
[2] Colnaghi exhibits the drawing in 1960 and in Slive's 1965 "Drawings of Rembrandt" Colnaghi's is credited
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
The Maida and George Abrams Collection, Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Gift of George Abrams in memory of Maida Abrams
Accession Year
Object Number
European and American Art
The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
Publication History

A Catalogue of the Extensive and Valuable Collection of Ancient Engravings & Drawings, the Property of John Knight, Esq., auct. cat. (London, July 19, 1841), p. 7, lot 120

Cornelis Hofstede de Groot, Die Handzeichnungen Rembrandts, E. F. Bohn (Haarlem, 1906), p. 316, no. 1363

Friedrich Lippmann, ed., Original Drawings by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn. Reproduced in the Colours of the Originals by Emrik and Binger at Haarlem, Martinus Nijhoff (The Hague, 1914-1920), third series, part II, repr.

Otto Benesch, Rembrandt Werk und Forschung, Gilhofer & Ranschburg (Vienna, 1935), p. 24

Otto Benesch, The Drawings of Rembrandt, Phaidon Press (Oxford, 1954 - 1957), Vol. II, p. 80, no. 339, repr. as fig. 378

Important Old Master Drawings; Fine Old Master Paintings, auct. cat., Sotheby's, London (London, November 20, 1957), p. 13, lot 70, repr.

Exhibition of Old Master Drawings, auct. cat., P. & D. Colnaghi & Co. Ltd. (London, England, 1960), cat. no. 30, repr.

Seymour Slive, Drawings of Rembrandt, Dover Publications Inc. (New York, 1965), no. 426, repr.

Fine Old Master Drawings, auct. cat., Christie, Manson and Woods, Ltd. (London, April 7, 1970), p. 41, lot 124, repr.

Otto Benesch, The Drawings of Rembrandt [enlarged ed.], Phaidon Press (Oxford, 1973), Vol. II, cat. no. 339, repr. as fig. 410

Old Master Drawings, auct. cat., Christie's, New York (New York, January 11, 1997), lot 385, repr.

William W. Robinson, Bruegel to Rembrandt: Dutch and Flemish Drawings from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, exh. cat., Harvard University Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2002), pp. 118-119, cat. no. 46, repr. p. 119

Jeanne Faton, "Entretien avec George Abrams: Dessins de l'âge d'or hollandais", L'Estampille/L'Objet d'art (April 2003), no. 379, pp. 46-55, repr. p. 52

Clifford S. Ackley and Ronni Baer, Rembrandt's Journey: Painter, Draftsman, Etcher, exh. cat., MFA Publications (Boston, 2003), pp. 98-99, 314, cat. no. 34, repr. p. 99

Ivan Gaskell, Rembrandt and the Aesthetics of Technique, brochure, Harvard University Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2006), checklist

Peter C. Sutton and William W. Robinson, Drawings by Rembrandt, his Students and Circle from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, exh. cat., Bruce Museum and Yale University Press (U.S.) (New Haven and London, 2011), pp. 12, 22, 44-45, cat. no. 3, repr. p. 45

Jaco Rutgers and Timothy Standring, Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker, exh. cat., Denver Art Museum and Yale University Press (Denver, 2018), pp. 21, 24, 175, under n. 13, cat. no. 9, repr. p. 24

Colleen Walsh, "Connecting with a Masterpiece: Rembrandt Drawing at Harvard Art Museums Offers a Close Look at Artist's Hand", The Harvard Gazette (August 1, 2019), repr.,, accessed August 1, 2019

Peter Schatborn and Erik Hinterding, Rembrandt: The Complete Drawings and Etchings, Taschen (Cologne, 2019), cat. no. D290, p. 196, repr.

Exhibition History

Exhibition of Old Master Drawings, P. & D. Colnaghi & Co. Ltd., London, 04/28/1960 - 05/28/1960

Bruegel to Rembrandt: Dutch and Flemish Drawings from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, British Museum, London, 06/13/2002 - 09/22/2002; Institut Néerlandais, Paris, 10/10/2002 - 12/08/2002; Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 03/22/2003 - 07/06/2003

Rembrandt's Journey: Painting, Draftsman, Etcher, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Boston, 10/26/2003 - 01/18/2004; The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, 02/14/2004 - 05/09/2004

Rembrandt and the Aesthetics of Technique, Harvard University Art Museums, Busch-Reisinger Museum, 09/09/2006 - 12/10/2006

Drawings by Rembrandt, his Students and Circle from the Collection of Maida and George Abrams, Bruce Museum, Greenwich, 09/24/2011 - 01/08/2012; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Houston, 04/15/2012 - 07/08/2012

32Q: 2300 Dutch & Flemish, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 07/17/2019 - 11/21/2019

Rembrandt: Painter as Printmaker, Denver Art Museum, Denver, 09/16/2018 - 01/09/2019

Subjects and Contexts

Dutch, Flemish, & Netherlandish Drawings

Related Works

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at