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Past display

Ulster Museum, Belfast: 15 January – 13 March 2016

Abbot Hall, Kendal: 19 March – 15 May 2016

Bristol Museum & Art Gallery: 21 May – 17 July 2016

Individual venues had different admission policies

A much-loved work from the National Gallery Collection – Self Portrait at the Age of 63 by Rembrandt – went on tour as the final painting in the three-year Masterpiece Tour.

'Self Portrait at the Age of 63' is one of Rembrandt's last pictures. Painted in the final year of his life, it is a particularly poignant work, showing the great Master now aged and reflective.

Through the use of light and layers of heavily textured paint, Rembrandt directs our focus towards his face. X-radiographs have shown that originally, Rembrandt painted himself wearing a much larger, white cap, and holding a brush in his right hand; both of these elements were then edited out, so that nothing distracts the viewer from a 'direct' encounter with the artist.

'Self Portrait at the Age of 63' visited three regional galleries in the UK on the tour:

  • Ulster Museum, Belfast (15 January – 13 March 2016)
  • Abbot Hall, Kendal (19 March – 15 May 2016)
  • Bristol Museum & Art Gallery (21 May – 17 July 2016)

The Masterpiece Tour is part of the National Gallery’s commitment to promote the understanding, knowledge and appreciation of Old Master paintings to as wide an audience as possible. This opportunity to bring hugely popular National Gallery paintings to the public’s doorstep was made possible by the generous support of Christie’s.

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