The Netherlands and France have reached agreement on sharing the Rembrandt wedding portraits, culture minister Jet Bussemaker told parliament in a written briefing on Wednesday.
The two countries will each buy one of the portraits from the owners, the Rothschild family, for €80m, but the paintings will always be exhibited as a pair.
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.
Originally, the Netherlands was keen to purchase both paintings for €160m, with the state contributing half the money and the Rijksmuseum raising the rest.
However, earlier this week it became apparent that France had made a bid for one of the two portraits. According to French paper Les Echoes, the Louvre and the Rothschilds had been trying to work out a deal to buy the pictures since 2013.
They will now be exhibited together alternatively in both museums.
The Dutch parliament agreed the purchase price for the one portrait on Tuesday evening.
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