Friday, June 12, 2020

Memorable visuals, 1: Painting: De Melkmeid

A Facebook friend challenged me to post a work of art a day, one I have seen in person or has greatly affected me, and incorporates the visual: painting, sculpture, theater, opera, film, dance, photography, architecture … Vermeer’s kitchenmaid will likely not be the only Dutch painting to show up this series, even the only Vermeer. But of all the paintings in the Rijksmuseum she’s the one I’m closest to, taking every opportunity for another glance between crowds…

Selected comments to the Facebook post:

John Whiting: A favorite of mine as well. A masterpiece of composition as well as comment.

Curtis Faville: The great Dutch masters portray a world of order, clarity and stasis.

Anthony Holdsworth: One of the greatest of the Dutch masters, Pieter Brueghel the Elder did not paint a world of 'order, clarity and stasis'. His later works: The Blind Leading the Blind, Hunters in the Snow, The Peasant Wedding, among others, are the most astounding depictions of the vanished peasant world in western art.

Alexis Alrich:I keep wondering what that box on the floor is. It looks like an incense burner or maybe rat poison. Do you know Charles Shere?

Charles Shere: Pretty sure it’s a little charcoal burner for warming your feet. It can get cold and damp in Delft…

Alexis Alrich: oh that makes sense! Another forgotten piece of daily life.

Dan McCleary: I love the broken window pane

Martin Snapp: Vermeer is my favorite.

Suzy Nelson: Did you see the movie with Scarlett Johansen....The girl with the pearl earring? I love mise en scene in that picture. Point/counterpoint to our own lives.

Daniel James Wolf: Amazing how little the bread has changed. I guess when you get it right, you stick to it.

Allan Leedy:'s_Vermeer

I myself think Brueghel the Elder does show order, clarity, and the same kind of stasis Vermeer does. The stasis is a held breath, an interruption in that constant motion we've known since Heraklitus.

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