Look at the pictures. Mostly they’re about sex and violence. My mother asked me to explain a Poussin to her. Since it showed nymphs and satyrs wanking, I pretended to be as baffled as she was.
Rembrandt is the Victorian idea of what an Old Master ought to be. He’s pompous, sentimental and humourless and he paints in shades of brown. Most Old Masters are nothing like him, but the contagion of his Protestant righteousness seeps out into all the adjoining galleries.
Reverence and received opinion keep us from seeing what is really there.