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Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Vermeer's Art, Paintings of Light

Dutch artist Jan Vermeer (1632-1675) was known for his paintings of light. In his above painting, The Milkmaid (1658-1660) Vermeer’s composition is influenced by light. The light shines in from the windows on the left and moves over the figure,table with still life and wall. Texture is seen in the light and half tones. According to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, an impression of monumentality is a result of the artist's use of a relatively low vantage point and a pyramidal building up of forms from the left foreground to the woman's head. According to the Rijksmuseum, the painting "is built up along two diagonal lines. They meet by the woman's right wrist." This focuses attention on the pouring of the milk.

The pointillist pattern of bright dots on the bread and basket suggests "scintillating daylight and rough textures at the same time." The white walls reflect the daylight with different intensities showing the effects of uneven textures on the plastered surfaces. The glass window panes differ with a crack in one (fourth row from the bottom, far right) reflected on the wood of the window frame. Below that pane, another has a scratch, indicated with a thin white line. Another pane (second row from the bottom, second from right) is pushed inward within its frame. (Wikipedia)

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