France, Netherlands bid for rare Rembrandt portraits

September 26, 2015 7:41 am

 

said they were willing to pay €80 million to acquire one of two Rembrandt paintings. Photo / Getty Images

France said yesterday it was willing to pay 80 million ($140 million)
to acquire one of two Rembrandt paintings being sold by the Rothschild
family for the Louvre museum.
The two full-length portraits of a
young couple painted shortly before their wedding in 1634 have been
owned by the wealthy banking family since the mid-19th century and have
rarely been seen in public.
Culture Minister Fleur Pellerin said the offer would be “exceptionally financed by the Bank of France”.
Pellerin
and her Dutch counterpart Jet Bussemaker wrote to the Rothschilds in
July proposing the Louvre and Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam each buy one
painting.
On Monday, said it was hoping to buy
both artworks, with the Government footing half the 160 million bill,
while the Rijksmuseum would raise the rest.
However, the joint
acquisition seemed back on the table in what Pellerin described as “an
innovative solution that would strengthen the cultural co-operation
between France and the Netherlands”.
She said the two artworks would alternate between the museums.
The artnet website said the portraits have been publicly viewed once in the past 150 years.

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