The Night Watch Revisited

This website is about the future of the Night Watch and the possibility of a total and definitive reconstruction of the pinnacle in the career of master Rembrandt.

In 1642 he accomplished his most famous painting the Night Watch. Unfortunately Rembrandt's most important master piece, a group portrait of the armed Amsterdam civic-guard in a rather unusual setting, was reduced in size and virtually disfigured in 1715. The Night Watch has been copied several times shortly after its completion in 1642. One of these copies is exceptionally reliable (the one Lundens did). Without the copy Lundens realised shortly after 1642 informing us extensively of how the Night Watch looked like during the period of its completion, it would be ludicrous even to consider a definitive and total reconstruction. But the copy of Lundens is there. It exists. Can the Night Watch be restored and reconstructed totally, like the bridge in Mostar? I think so. Technically it can be done and the border areas that have been lost can be considered mainly as background. Apart from that, most of the persons and architectural details that are depicted in these margins, are situated in the dark areas, as a backdrop of the moving persons in the central part.
However, in the totality of the composition the margins are an indispensable part of the total picture and cannot be omitted.
In a popular T.V. broadcast TWEE VANDAAG, 16th January 2006, the artist Alfred Eikelenboom enlightened his arguments in front of the camera why the nightwatch should be reconstructed.
This special broadcast was linked to the year of the jubilee of Rembrandt’s 400th birthday.
As a result: approval of sympathetic  and enthusiast individuals who praised the initiative.
However from the realm of intellectuals, scholars, connoisseurs or critics the reaction was radio-silence.
Yet it is still my strong believe that my wake-up call will be answered some day and that public opinion will tilt in favor of the project. It is just a matter of time.

Alfred Eikelenboom