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Johannes Vermeer by Arthur K. Wheelock
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Johannes Vermeer

by Arthur K. Wheelock

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While during his lifetime Vermeer made a modest living with his artistry, at the time of his death, he was heavily in debt and sadly under appreciated. It wasn't until the late 19th century that his works were enthusiastically embraced and acclaimed for the exquisite beauty they represent.

This beautiful coffee table book highlights each of Vermeer's paintings, with an in depth study not only of the work, but in addition, the small tidbits known of Vermeer at the time of his masterpiece.

This fascinating book is a joy to behold and I spent hours observing the subtle nuances.

There are only 35 known paintings, one of which (The Concert) was stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in March 2007. This work is priceless and may be forever gone.

Vermeer's paintings are infused with a radiance of light. Time stands still on the canvas and we, as observers, feel as though we stepped into a private space wherein the figures freeze mid air with an eloquent motion and if we listen carefully, we can hear the dust quietly settle.

Of the 35 known works, I counted 14 wherein radiant light shone through a window. Many paintings contain musical instruments:

And, something I found fascinating was the fact that in four of the 35 paintings the same yellow satin jacket trimmed in white fur was worn.

In further study, I learned that while originally the fur was thought to be ermine, in reality, most likely it is white squirrel or white cat...

I'll end with a high recommendation to read this book if you are interested in art, art history, or simply delight in stunning beauty at the hands of a master. ( )
2 vote Whisper1 | Jan 4, 2011 |
Catalogue of an exhibition at the following venues:

Mauritshuis, The Hague - March 1-June 2, 1996;
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC - November 12, 1995-February 11, 1996

The exhibit's Washington run was interrupted first by a government shutdown, and then by a blizzard. But I saw it before all of the brouhaha.

Exhibition Info from the National Gallery of Art
  SeiShonagon | Dec 18, 2006 |
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Exhibition catalogue. Please don't combine with other works about Vermeer by the same author.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0300065582, Hardcover)

This lavishly illustrated book will be the catalog for the first exhibition devoted solely to the works of Johannes Vermeer--the 17th-century Dutch painter who explored the psychological nuances of human endeavor--opening at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., in November 1995. 105 plates, 50 in color.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:02 -0400)

Catalogue to the exhibition early '96 in The Hague.

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