Signed on the table, under the left arm of the lady writing.
Signed on the table, under the left arm of the lady writing. This masterpiece has been stolen not once, but twice in the last twenty-five years.
The owner, a member of Britain's Parliament, was targeted by the IRA, who broke into his estate in and took a total of nineteen paintings. It was recovered a week later, having sustained only minor damage. Inthe Dublin underworld stole the painting. Only after more than seven years of secret negotiations and international detective work was the painting recovered.
This is the second work, together with the Guitar Player Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood, Londongiven as security for a debt of fl by the widow of Vermeer to the baker van Buyten, on 27 January Collection Franco van Bleyswyck, Delft. Mentioned in the inventory of his estate, Collection Hendrik van Slingelandt, Collection Miller von Aichholz, Vienna, Bought by art dealer Sedelmeyer, Paris, same year: Art dealer Kleinberger, Paris.
By avoiding anecdote, by not relating actions to specific situations, he attained a sense of timelessness in his work. The representation of universal truths was achieved by eliminating incidental objects and through subtle manipulation of light, color and perspective.
The canvas presents a deceptively simple composition. The placid scene with its muted colors suggests no activity or hint of interruption.
Powerful verticals and horizontals in the composition, particularly the heavy black frame of the background painting, establish a confining backdrop that contributes to the restrained mood. The composition is activated by the strong contrast between the two figures.
The firm stance of the statuesque maid acts as a counterweight to the lively mistress intent on writing her letter.
The maid's gravity is emphasized by her central position in the composition. The left upright of the picture frame anchors her in place while the regular folds of her clothing sustain the effect down to the floor.
In contrast, the mistress inclines dynamically on her left forearm. Her compositional placement thrusts her against the compressed space on the right side of the canvas.The maid looks out the window away from her mistress attempting to isolate herself from the uncomfortable situation while her mistress is emotionally involved in the response to a letter hastily cast down on the floor.
Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid is a painting by the Dutch artist Johannes Vermeer, completed in – and held in the National Gallery of Ireland. The work shows a middle-class woman attended by a housemaid who is presumably acting as messenger and go-between for the lady and her lover.
an in-depth, interactive study of A Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid by Johannes Vermeer. Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid is a painting by the Dutch artist Johannes Vermeer, completed in – and held in the National Gallery of urbanagricultureinitiative.com work shows a middle-class woman attended by a housemaid who is presumably acting as messenger and go-between for the lady and her urbanagricultureinitiative.com: Johannes Vermeer.
On September 1, , in Antwerp, the Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid was recovered by Scotland Yard art detective Charley Hill, who had posed as a buyer.
Hill . Lady Writing a Letter with Her Maid exemplifies Vermeer's essential theme of revealing the universal within the domain of the commonplace. By avoiding anecdote, by not relating actions to specific situations, he attained a sense of timelessness in his work.