The J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles has purchased the self-portrait by Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (1606-69) which is now known as Rembrandt Laughing.
When it originally sold in October 2007 at
Gloucestershire saleroom Moore, Allen & Innocent for £2.2m
(outstripping a £1000-1500 estimate), it set a record for a picture
sold in the UK provinces.
It had been consigned by an English family
who had owned it for many years but were apparently unaware that it
may have been by the hand of the Dutch master. In the year
following that sale, the 8¾ x 6½in (22 x 17cm) oil on copper from
1628 was identified as an autograph work by Ernst van de Wetering,
head of the Rembrandt Research Project. Crucially it had the
artist's monogram, RHL, which combined the artist's name
with his home city of Leiden.
It has now been acquired by the Getty for an
undisclosed price from a London dealership.
At the same time, the Getty also announced
that it had acquired a view of the Grand Canal by Canaletto. Again
the price was undisclosed.
Meanwhile, in the UK a partnership of five
national and regional museums has raised £23.1m to save John
Constable'sSalisbury Cathedral from the Meadowsfor the nation.
The 1831 painting had been on long-term loan
at The National Gallery since 1983 but has now been purchased from
the children of its late owner, Lord Ashton of Hyde, through London
fine art agents Robert Holden Ltd.
The work will be shown at Tate Britain
before travelling around the UK at the end of the year.
In a separate development, The Ashmolean
announced it has acquired the portrait of John Ruskin by John
Everett Millais. Recently exhibited at the Tate's Pre-Raphaelite
exhibition, it has been on loan to the Ashmolean since January 2012
and has been allocated to the Oxford museum under the Acceptance in
Lieu of Inheritance scheme.