ACTION - "THE WOUNDED REMBRANDT"
"With my project I wanted to stimulate
and refresh the discussion regarding the authenticity of any art works and prevent them from being restored to death."
Vadim Moroz, March 1993
Until 1991, I painted many
pictures in my own "Neo-Barock" style: dark landscapes, dark portraits and dark self-portraits. During the same
year I had a conversation with a writer regarding an essay for a newspaper. He liked my style and considered it as continuation
of Rembrandt’s art. We began to talk about Rembrandt and I stated that I studied his brushstroke and was able to proof
that the “Man with the Golden Helmet” is indeed an authentic picture of this great master. A couple weeks later
an article “The artist Vadim Moroz can recognize Rembrandt’s brushstroke…” appeared in the “Berliner
Morgenpost”, one of the major German newspapers.
A couple weeks after the appearance of this essay, I was contacted by a well-known
German artist. He handed me the reports of the scientific research for the “Man with the Golden Helmet” in confidence.
These documents contain chemical and radiation results (‘Autoradiography’) and restoration details, which actually
reflect the work as ‘dissecting’ the painting instead of restoring it.
These research results confirmed Rembrandt’s authorship
but the art historians did not disclose these facts to the public. Instead, they provided false information. Why did they do it? First of all, it could be sensationalism- they became famous and secondly they
tried to cover up the multiply damages caused by the "dissection".
In any case, I was left alone with the responsibility
to do something with those documents. In 1992, during the International
Rembrandt Exposition in Berlin,
I was not permitted to give an official press conference in the museum halls. Therefore, I invited reporters to a "private
conference" in this Rembrandt exhibition to present the facts to the public.
Since TV cameras were not permitted inside the building, I
had to repeat my statements outside the museum. In addition to this media campaign, I published the book "Der Mann mit
dem Goldhelm und doch Rembrandt" ("The Man with the Golden Helmet - A Real Rembrandt"), containing all of the
facts. I also performed my project "The Wounded Rembrandt" in New York City. My "dark period" has
ended. I stopped painting "dark landscapes". Is Rembrandt satisfied?
I 'carefully' restore my copy of the "Man with the Golden
Helmet", using a scalpel.
In doing so, the picture is "wounded" in several places,
and blood flows out.
Efforts to staunch the wounds fail - the picture bleeds to death.
|"The Wounded Rembrandt", acrylic on canvas, 1993, 15" x 21"
"Artist Vadim Moroz created a sensation
when he violated Rembrandt's picture in front of the Metropolitan Museum of Arts. Blood dripped from the damaged canvas
of the picture. The uproar cooled when it became clear that the picture was a copy, painted by Moroz. It was an art-action,
the picture had been primed with acrylic 'movie blood'.
The painter, action-artist and author Vadim Moroz, was performing this action in connection with his book, THE "MAN
WITH THE GOLDEN HELMET"- A REAL REMBRANDT, which first appeared in German.
Moroz is challenging the art theorists, who wrote off "The Man with the Golden
Helmet" as an original Rembrandt. He claims that they failed to interpret the research evidence correctly. According
to his evaluation of the scientific research, above all the autoradiographic evidence, Moroz concludes that the "Man
with the Golden Helmet" was indeed painted by Rembrandt. The brushwork also points to Rembrandt.
Moroz sticks to the following statement: "There
are plenty of connoisseurs who agree with me, but in the last eight years discreditors have managed to direct media attention onto themselves with their sensational claims. Certainly, some of the discredits made by the Rembrandt Research Project in Amsterdam,
were justified. However, claims that three Rembrandt pictures were "inauthentic" including the
"Man with the Golden Helmet" were not only based on false evaluations, but in addition, parts of the evidence was
concealed from the public view."
By Vadim Moroz
long story had a positive outcome. Shortly after this art project ,I confronted Prof. Dr. Jan Kelch, the curator of the "Dahlem Museum", in the
city hall of Berlin-Charlottenburg. I presented
him with the scientific results during his public
lecture, which were concealed from the public. He
had no other choice as to admit that writing off Rembrandt's pictures was primary based on "our" subjective
evaluation. He also publicly stated that “Art History is a liberal science and personal opinions of art historians are
sometimes more important then scientific research.”
About this time, I received
strong support from Professor Dr. Klaus Grimm, author
of "Rembrandt Himself" and well recognized
Rembrandt expert. During the International Art Historian's Congress, he ended his lecture with the following words: “And
of course “The Man with the Golden Helmet” belongs to Rembrandt and we have to return it to him.”
discreditors in Berlin stopped their attacks on Rembrandt for a long time, while the “The Rembrandt Research Project”
in Amsterdam also stopped to discredit Rembrandt and developed newer and more carefully designed research methods. I no longer
had any reasons to continue my actions concerning this subject.
|"DER MANN MIT DEM GOLDHELM UND DOCH REMBRANDT"
DER MANN MIT DEM GOLDHELM, by Vadim Moroz, in German, published by the author,
1993, 1st printing, 5.3/4"x8.1/4"; 97 pages, b/w and color illustrations, signed by the author on the title page,
out of print, limited amount of copies available, $29.00 + S/H. Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for shipping rates or to request an invoice. Thank you.