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Rembrandt returns from Russia

Rembrandt van Rijn Portrait of a Scholar 1631. State Hermitage Museum St PetersburgAMSTERDAM: July 10, 2017. KLM Cargo is to deliver 63 Dutch Masters, including six Rembrandts, from the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg to the Hermitage Museum in Amsterdam for the Dutch Masters from the Hermitage: Treasures of the Tsars exhibition, from October 07, 2017 to May 27, 2018.

A large number of the paintings, including Rembrandt's 'Young Woman With Earrings', are returning to the Netherlands for the first time since they were sold more than three centuries ago.

"The famous Dutch Masters of the Golden Age from the Hermitage were mostly shipped by sea to the Winter Palace in St Petersburg, when they were first bought centuries ago," declared Cathelijne Broers, director of the Hermitage Amsterdam. "Now they are returning to the Netherlands by air. That we are able to do this in partnership with KLM makes me exceedingly proud."

Some 37 paintings from the Dutch Golden Age between 1650 and 1670 will be presented in the Nieuwe Keizersgracht wing of the museum and include Rembrandt's 'Flora', one of Frans Hals' celebrated male portraits, and Bartholomeus van der Helst's 'Nieuwmarkt in Amsterdam'.

The Hermitage Amsterdam said the show "promises to be a feast of old favorites and new discoveries", including works by Ferdinand Bol, Gerard Dou, Govert Flinck, Frans Hals, Paulus Potter, Jacob van Ruisdael, Jan Steen, Willem Drost, Jacob Duck, Pieter Janssens Elinga and Emanuel de Witte.

Russian Tsar Peter the Great was 25 when he acquired his first Rembrandt – ahead of an art collecting frenzy that swept Europe in the 18th Century and included Catherine the Great, who established the Hermitage as a museum.

KLM president & CEO Pieter Elbers noted: "The transportation of these extraordinary works from the Hermitage Collection will be carried out with the greatest possible care by our specialised staff at KLM Cargo. People will come to Amsterdam from all over the world to see this exhibition."

Pictured: Rembrandt van Rijn's Portrait of a Scholar, 1631. From the State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg.

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