Though clearly a fragment of a larger sheet, this spirited profile study of the head of a classic Rembrandtesque 'oriental' can be related to the drawings produced by the master and his pupils in the mid and late 1630s. Martin Royalton-Kisch has kindly pointed out the very close analogies between the pen and wash technique seen here, and that of a drawing of a Group of Three Figures (Scribes?),
in an American private collection, a drawing that was published as Rembrandt by Benesch1
, but is now considered a characteristic work of Gerbrand van den Eeckhout, who studied with Rembrandt towards the end of the 1630s.2
In both drawings, the artist has also used paper toned with brown wash. This drawing would therefore seem to be an interesting addition to the corpus
of early studies made by Eeckhout while he was still in Rembrandt's studio.
1. O. Benesch, The Drawings of Rembrandt, rev. ed., 6 vols, London 1973, vol. I, p. 27, no. 88, repr. fig. 101
2. H. Bevers, 'Early, Rembrandtesque Drawings by Gerbrand van den Eeckhout', Master Drawings, vol. XXLVIII, 2010, pp. 53-54, repr. fig.17