Rembrandt’s Night Watch uncropped by AI 300 years after it was trimmed

Margins from all four sides were removed decades after the painting was completed. | Video: Rijksmuseum

A mixture of artificial intelligence and painstaking research has allowed researchers to restore Rembrandt van Rijn’s The Night Watch to its original size, the Associated Press reports, centuries after it was trimmed down to fit in a smaller wall. The work was conducted as part of the Operation Night Watch project, and the results are being exhibited in the Honor Gallery in Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, which sees the original painting flanked by printed strips filling in the lost sections.

The Night Watch was originally completed in 1642, after which it was hung in the club house of the civil militia it was based on. But 70 years later it was moved to a new location, where there wasn’t space for the whole painting and it was unceremoniously…

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