‘Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife’, etching on paper

‘Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife’, etching on paper

After Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn (1606-1669).



A delicate and powerful etching after Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn (1606-1669), ‘Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife’. Made on laid paper in the 19th century in The Netherlands. A partial watermark is visible.

Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn (1606-1669)

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn is regarded as the most important Dutch master of the 17th century and as one of the greatest painters and etchers in the European art world. In his career he produced no fewer than three hundred paintings, hundreds of etchings and thousands of drawings. Rembrandt himself never came to Italy, but his work is nevertheless visibly influenced by the Caravaggism. He was a master of the play between light and dark, which led to many lively works full of drama and contrast.

Many works can still be found in various museums, including his self-portraits. He was very confident and saw himself as a history and portrait painter. He portrayed himself as a king from the East or as the apostle Paul in his self-portraits. Not only himself, but also his wife Saskia Uylenburgh, his girlfriend Hedrickje Stoffels and his son Titus van Rijn are frequently portrayed in his paintings. After a very successful career, Rembrandt died on October 4, 1669 in Amsterdam.


Etching is considered the most important technique for producing prints by old masters. It is a very traditional process discovered by Daniel Hopfer (1470 – 1536) in Germany. Daniel Hopfer already used the etching technique on combat clothing before applying it to make a print. A strong acid or pickling agent is used to cut metal surfaces (usually copper, zinc or steel). The metal plate is covered with a waxy soil which is resistant to acid. The artist then scratches his or her design into the metal with different types of etching needles. After a bath of acid or pickling agent, the scratched metal undergoes a redox reaction, leaving the drawing in the wax on the plate. Ink is poured over the plate and wiped off again to fill in the scratched areas. By then pressing the plate in paper, an etching is created.


The word after is often used in museums, art galleries and antique stores. The meaning is very simple, it is a copy of that specific artist’s work where the word ‘after’ is placed before or after the artist’s name. It is very important not to forget that the word ‘after’ has nothing to do with ‘faking’ the artist’s work.

An (unknown) artist can paint a copy of a famous work which is exhibited in a museum. This copy if not a fake, because the (unknown) artist is not claiming to be the original artist of the work. When the (unknown) artist wants to sell his own copy, the word ‘after’ is placed before or after the original artist’s work. Now, the work is not a fake, but a nicely made copy.

Using the word ‘after’ for copies has already been done for centuries. But there are different levels of ‘afters’. An ‘after’ can already be an ‘after’ when an (unknown) artist is copying in 2020 the work ‘The starry night’ by Van Gogh. The (unknown) artist is far removed from the original artist by time and association. A very high level of an ‘after’ is when the original artist is involved or approves the ‘after’. Even an original signature by the original artist can be placed on the ‘after’.

Even tough an ‘after’ is a copy, the value and quality can still be very high and ‘afters’ will stay highly collectible.



‘Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife’, etching on paper


Additional information





Sold with frame

This item is sold including it's frame

Dimensions including frame

45 x 55 centimeters

Dimensions excluding frame

44.5 x 32 centimeters

Frame condition

This frame has been repurposed especially for this artwork. Taaffeite Collectibles tries in every way to protect the environment and advocates a 'reuse attitude' to leave a better world for our next generation. Consider this frame as a gift and please feel free to reframe the artwork to your own taste so that it fits into your interior or workplace. Traces of wear and tear visible.


Etching on paper


After Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn (1606-1669)


'Joseph and Potiphar's Wife'




The Netherlands


19th century


Plate signed


Due to prolonged exposure to the elements, signs of aging are clearly visible. However, this contributes to a unique and characteristic presentation of this work.


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