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Breitner was 25 when he painted this self-portrait in 1882. His mission was now clear to him, as he told his Rotterdam benefactor Van Stolk that year: to be ‘the painter of the people’. Even more to the point, he already was, ‘because I want to be’. He looks down on us with the same self-assurance - in his shirtsleeves and with a lit cigarette.


Title Self-portrait
Material and technique Oil on canvas
Object type Painting
Location This object is on view in room 13
Dimensions (general) Height : 40 cm
Width : 30 cm
Thickness : 2 cm
Makers Painter: George Hendrik Breitner
Accession number VdV 6
Credits Bruikleen / Loan: Stichting Willem van der Vorm 1972
Department Modern Art
Acquisition date 1972
Age maker About 25 years old
Collector Collector / Willem van der Vorm
Exhibitions The Collection Enriched (2011)
De collectie als tijdmachine (2017)
External exhibitions Nederlanders in Parijs 1789-1914 (2017)
Retour de Paris (2018)
Material Oil > Paint > Artist's material > Material > Material and technique
Canvas > Worked fibres > Fibre > Vegetable material > Organic material > Material > Material and technique
Object Painting > Painting > Two-dimensional object > Art object
Geographical origin Northern Netherlands > The Netherlands > Western Europe > Europe

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All about the maker

George Hendrik Breitner

Rotterdam 1857 - Amsterdam 1923

George Hendrik Breitner mainly became famous with his paintings of Amsterdam street life. He studied at various academies, including the Hague Academy, the Poly..