By Suzan Crane
November 18, 2011 12:33 pm November 18, 2011 12:33 pm
Long dismissed as dirty little secrets, Rembrandt’s erotic etchings have been known to collectors for centuries but rarely seen by the public. In 2001 the British Museum exhibited several of the prints. Now, the World Erotic Art Museum (weam.com) in Miami Beach is showing the entire collection together — 20 etchings — for the first time.
Rembrandt depicts sexual encounters in a suggestive but unambiguous way in works like ”The Ledikant” (1646), which portrays a couple making love. Right, “Woman With the Arrow (Venus and Cupid?),” 1661.
By today’s standards, the etchings — inspired by the Bible, Greek mythology and everyday life — seem tame. But in Rembrandt’s time they were scandalous and closely guarded by those who owned them.
By featuring work by a renowned artist like Rembrandt (1609-69), the museum’s owner, Naomi Wilzig, said she hoped to “elevate our position within the artistic community” and prove that “erotic doesn’t mean pornographic.”
The exhibition, “Rembrandt’s Erotic Secrets,” drawn from the collection of the Baron of Fulwood & Dirleton, runs from Nov. 29 through March 31 and is for viewers 18 or older.