The Night Watch (Dutch: De Nachtwacht), is a 1642 painting by Rembrandt van Rijn. It is in the collection of the Amsterdam Museum but is prominently displayed on a permanent loan to the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, and is the best-known painting in its collection. The Night Watch is one of the most famous Dutch Golden Age paintings.
He was known for the dramatic use of light and shadow (tenebrism) and motion perception in what would have traditionally been a static military group portrait. The painting was commissioned around 1639 by Captain Banning Cocq and seventeen members of his Kloveniers (civic militia guards). The artistic work was completed in 1642, at the peak of the Dutch Golden Age.
It depicts the eponymous company moving out, led by Captain Frans Banning Cocq (dressed in black, with a red sash) and his lieutenant, Willem van Ruytenburch (dressed in yellow, with a white sash). With effective use of sunlight and shade, Rembrandt leads the eye to the three most important characters among the crowd: the two men in the center (from whom the painting gets its original title) and the woman in the center-left background carrying a chicken.