The Netherlands is likely to be thwarted in its efforts to buy two Rembrandt portraits because France is keen to buy one of them, sources in The Hague have told the AD.
The paper says Dutch culture minister Jet Bussemaker is again in talks with her French counterpart after it emerged France had made a bid for one of the two wedding portraits for €80m.
Earlier Bussemaker went public with her ministry’s plans to buy both pictures from the Rothschild family in France for €160m. The government would put up €80m while the Rijksmuseum was trying to raise the remaining €80m, the minister said.
Sources told the AD it is now very unlikely that both paintings will be brought to the Netherlands.
The paintings are a pair of wedding portraits which show Maerten Soolmans and Oopjen Coppit and date from 1634. They were sold to the Rothschilds by Amsterdam’s Van Loon family in 1877.
According to French paper Les Echoes, the way is now open for the Dutch government to buy the other portrait and the two would be exhibited together alternatively in both museums. Les Echos says the Louvre and the Rothschilds have been trying to work out a deal to buy the pictures since 2013.
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