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Essential Vermeer 3.0
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Did Vermeer make mistakes? What is the Milkmaid preparing in her kitchen? Is the Girl with a Pearl Earring really a masterpiece and is her pearl a fake? Why did the artist's reputation vaporize so quickly after he died and why is he so famous today? What tricks and special colors did he use? Bolstered by his lifelong study of Vermeer and decades of experience as a professional painter, Jonathan Janson reveals Vermeer's life and art in human, down-to-earth terms.

For anyone interested in Vermeer the man and Vermeer's art, rather than his myth, 25 Things You Didn't Know about Vermeer offers rare glimpses into the artist's day-to-day experiences and struggles both inside and outside the confines of his studio.

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25 Things You (Probably) Didn't Know about Vermeer: Tricks, Troubles and Triumphs of a Great Dutch Master
Jonathan Janson
2021 | PDF | $6.95

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Dutch Painting

The Love Letter

Jacob Ochtervelt
c. 1670
Oil on canvas, 91.4 x 63.5 cm.
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
A Woman Reading a Letter with Two Maidservants, Jacob Ochtervelt

OCHTERVELT, Jacob
b. 1634, Rotterdam, d. 1682, Amsterdam

Ochtervelt was a Dutch genre painter active mainly in Rotterdam, but from 1674 he lived in Amsterdam. He was influenced by Pieter de Hooch and through him by Vermeer. Apart from a few portraits and some early hunting party and "merry company" scenes, his paintings are almost all elegant upper-class interiors, in which he showed off a skill in painting silks and satins to rival that of Ter Borch. His figures are extremely refined, but there is often a sexual element in his painting.

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