In February, detectives in Moscow raided what they believed to be an illegal gambling house. According to news reports, the gambling house earned up to $10 million per month, with the help of local officials who declined to investigate and shut the business down. During the search of the building, investigators found a Rembrandt painting and a painting by Pablo Picasso. It isn't clear which paintings were found, and it isn't clear what condition the paintings are in and whether they have been cared for properly.
It can be extremely difficult to determine which Rembrandt painting was found, as the artist was a prolific painter and generated hundreds of images in his life. Additionally, his students became skilled at Rembrandt's techniques, and many paintings the students generated have been falsely attributed to Rembrandt himself. If Rembrandt had produced fewer paintings, we could look for famous paintings by Rembrandt and determine which were missing or had been stolen. That simply isn't possible in this case, due to the sheer number of Rembrandt paintings available. We'll have to wait for the Russian authorities to release the name of the painting they found.
Oil paintings must be cared for properly. Extreme changes in heat and cold, which may occur when paintings are stored in warehouses, for example, can cause the oil paint to crack and peel off the surface of the canvas. Storing a painting in a horizontal manner can cause the canvas to buckle and bow, causing yet more paint to crack and peel. Tobacco smoke in the air can gather on the painting and obscure the image. While we hope the gamblers hung the painting in a room protected from such insults, we continue to hope that the Russian police will treat the paintings with care. They are part of a train of evidence and must be stored with the police, but we hope they will take special steps to protect these paintings.
It strikes us as strangely apt that a Rembrandt painting would be found in a gambling house. While Rembrandt was a successful painter during his lifetime, he was not good at managing his money. He was often quite poor and living beyond his means. He was forced to sell most of his possessions late in his life to pay off his debts. People who gamble often find themselves in similar situations, with their debts stripping their ability to pay and keep enough back to cover food and housing expenses. Perhaps having a Rembrandt painting looking down upon you as you gamble could serve as a cautionary tale, reminding you to live within your means and bet only what you're comfortable losing.
While much remains to be seen in this case, one thing is clear. Rembrandt paintings continue to hold their value, and are still considered luxury items by wealthy collectors. You don't have to be a member of the Russian underworld to own a painting by Rembrandt. Our skilled artists can generate an oil painting reproduction of a Rembrandt painting. We have over 500 Rembrandt paintingsto choose from.