A thought to begin the day, the week  – Lawson on Rembrandt – ‘the image is more than an image’;

‘…Rembrandt’s late self-portraits. These portraits can be seen as not merely providing a copy of the individual’s appearance but as seeking to move beyond the appearance to the experience of the individual and perhaps of all individuals. We are not being asked to look at an image of an old man as if to comment on the paintings likeness to the individual appearance, but are encouraged to ask what the paintings tells us about what it is to be old. The painting suggests a lifetime of events and a response to those events. Yet we cannot complete the closure as if we could read off unambiguously what was meant or intended here. We are left with the image and the sense that the image is more than an image. We can weave many tales about this character and it is in the complexity and variety of those tales, and the assumption that the image was intended to generate them, that closure is avoided. The image although itself not ambiguous cannot rest, for it is caught in a web of metaphors of its own making. The image thus stands for something which is itself open.’


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