Using a polarizing filter allows art historians to literally see through the surface layer by eliminating the glossy sheen of a painting. Old paint as it ages tends to be come transparent – and that sometimes gives clues that another work exists underneath the surface layer. The painting showing through is called ‘pentimento’ because it demonstrates that the artist may have repented over the execution of his original idea. – Rene Gerritsen
Rene Gerritsen has worked since 1988 as a freelance photographer doing photographic research on paintings and other art objects. He specializes in techniques such as radiography and ultra-violet fluorescence photography. His keen knowledge of these techniques makes him in demand for research and restoration; he has participated in many indepth investigations of paintings by van Gogh, Rembrandt, Jan Steen and others. For various independant artists he makes reproductions of their work for catalogues.
He lectures at the University of Amsterdam in painting restoration and photography. He also teaches photographic research at the Institute Collection Netherlands. He is a well-known Durch freelance photographer covering a wide array of genres including nature, historical architecture and sailing ships.
He has worked extensively with Ernst van de Wetering on the books “Rembrandt: Quest of a Genius” and on Volume IV of the Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings.