Abraham and Isaac, 1634, Rembrandt Harmenszoon Van Rijn (1606-1669)
Rembrandts greatest paintings tell stories, using visual signs that were immediately understandable to the audience of his day. The art critic Peter Schjeldahl writes: Was Rembrandts art the movies of its day? You may say so if youre careful to add that it also performed functions of photography, fiction, theatre, theology, and social anthropology all with an individualism that engendered continual audacities of technique and style.
Schjeldahl, Peter, Rembrandt in Boston, The New Yorker, Nov. 10, 2003