Selected Vermeer-Related Websites
Although the internet offers a long list of Vermeer and Vermeer-related websites, it is truly surprising how little up-to-date or in-depth content is available. The following list aims to represent those few valid or original websites which contain information not contained within the Essential Vermeer.
Recently, the museum's already monumental website services has totally been amplified and redesigned. Visitors will marvel at the sheer quantity as well as the quality of images and information available making it the museum website to rival, once the visitor gets used to the novel navigational system. Perhaps the Rijksmuseum website deserves to be called the most valuable museum related website on the net.
The site has undergone a three-part renewal: design, content and technical infrastructure have all been overhauled. The website makes use of the beautiful and world-renowned Rijksmuseum collection by using large images as well as greatly magnified details (often in full screen format, in so-called "moving panels"). The images also serve as navigational tools, prompting viewers to keep clicking to discover underlying information.
One webpage is dedicated to each of the four Vermeer's of the museum's collection, each of which presents an image and comment. A pulldown menu will guide help you explore various facets of each particular painting. By clicking on the zoom link you will access a high quality image which can be enlarged by clicking on the icon which appears in the lower right hand corner as you pass your cursor over the area. Many navigators lament that the enlarged image is too dark and contrasted. However, it is truly well worth the effort to save the image on your hard disk and then simply increase its luminosity with any graphics program.
The Rijksmuseum collection has a sizeable educational database, which was previously accessible under ‘1250 Major Exhibits’ .
Professionals – and all other interested parties of course – can search through over 50,000 works, of which more than 3,500 are accompanied by images (only Dutch). This was made possible by linking up a number of different Rijksmuseum content databases: Adlib, the Collection Management System, ARIA and the library catalogue with over 200,000 books and periodicals. An increasing number of Rijksmuseum works will be made available online during the next few years.
Do not miss the site's sumptuous encyclopedia or the chance to search the museums entire collection, both invaluable features for the curious, the neophyte or the seasoned art historian.
Remember, you must first select the area of your research in the upper pulldown menu where "kies zoekveld..." is written.
Search the Website
1. go to the home page http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/index.jsp?lang=en
2. open the right-hand panel
3. fill in the search box form (near the magnifying glass icon) with the term you wish to search and press enter
This online search function is extremely powerful. It can be accessed throughout the site by rolling your cursor over the "home" link, "search" is on the bottom of the pulldown menu. Users need only a single command to simultaneously search the website, the museum's collection, the web shop and the library catalogue, which contains more than 200,000 books and periodicals. For example, when you type in the word "Rembrandt", 364 collection objects, 23 web entries and 1494 library entries show up.
Copies of the Bulletin van het Rijksmuseum (Dutch only) can be downloaded from: http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/wetenschap/bulletin?lang=en
Girl with a Pearl Earring : An In-depth Study by Jonathan Janson
An in-depth study of the Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring.
Who was the girl? Was her pearl a real one? When and why was it painted? Was the background originally dark green instead of black? Was it a part of a pendant? Did Vermeer ever sell the painting? Why was it paid the same price as a reproduction when it was re-discovered in 1882? What painting techniques did the artist use? These and many other questions are discussed in more than thirty richly illustrated pages dedicated entirely to Vermeer's most illusive masterpiece.
Vermeer's Digital House by Kees Kaldenbach
A 3D digital model of Vermeer's home which no longer exists. 150 different household inventory items and click on some can be clicked on. Authors: Kees Kaldenbach (art historian), Allan Kuiper (industrial designer and Internet designer), Henk Zantkuijl (restoration architect, emeritus assistant professor TU Delft. More than visited, this site must be explored as it remains one of the most interesting Vermeer websites. oTher that Vermeer's Digital House, Drs. Kaldenbach has authored the following studies all of which can be accessed from Vermeer's Digital House.
"The View of Delft ": A Guided Art History Tour through the Painting
Tow Barges, Freight Ships and herring Buses in Vermeer's View of Delft
Jan Vermeer Little Street in Delft: Was it Located in Delft at Nieuwe Langendijk 22-26?
Johannes Vermeer: The Art of Painting
Excellent National Gallery of Art multi-page study of The Art of Painting.
Vermeer lectures and Museum Tours by Kees Kaldenbach
Imagine being the privileged guest of honor at the home of art historian Kees Kaldenbach, listening to a lecture on the astounding visual wonders that the Delft painter Johannes Vermeer has bestowed upon us. Afterwards, he will accompany you to the nearby Rijksmuseum where he will quietly point out and explain the visual wonders of Vermeer's technique; contents, brushstrokes, details, composition, color.
Photographs of Holland
Pieter Haringsma presents a sizable number of evocative photographs of Holland. His unique way of looking reveals many hidden treasures of his hometown Delft.
Vermeer's Camera by Phillip Steadman
Phillip Steadman's book about Vermeer's use of the camera obscura has been a source of great debate since it was published. This excellent site furnishes part of the evidence which support his theories, especially interesting are the projected drawings of the rooms, objects and sitters which are represented in Vermeer's interiors. Also included is an illustrated essay on "The Little Street" which proposes a probable location of the scene in Delft depicted by Vermeer. An informative and graphically stimulating site.