Vermeer’s ‘Girl with the Pearl Earring’ Continues to Inspire Awe
The extremely famous painting known as The Girl with the Pearl Earring is considered one of the finest paintings of all time. It was painted by the Dutch master, Johannes Vermeer in 1665 and depicts a young woman glancing over her shoulder sporting, of course, the legendary pearl earring.
Vermeer was always rather secretive about his models and never revealed their names to anyone. Perhaps it is part of the mystery of the paintings as well as the starkness and brilliant light. The painting sits in The Hague at the Mauritshuis Gallery and many have compared it in brilliance to da Vinci’s stunning Mona Lisa. If you did not get a chance to read our previous blog post about Mona Lisa, we highly recommend it.
All of Vermeer’s subjects project a pose that has always stirred controversy. There seemed something unsettling about them, certainly for the time in which they were painted, and perhaps that was what Vermeer was seeking.
A mere two strokes from Vermeer’s brush created the storied earring and the lighting in the painting was Vermeer’s trademark. The lighting effects are that much more profound when seen before a totally black background. The painting seems to reflect a feeling that one has interrupted this girl who, previously, was lost in deep and far away thoughts. Vermeer’s brilliance lay in an undercoating of white that he used in an effort to increase the reality and, along with his lighting, seemed to bring a natural and flowing movement to his work.
Source: Totally History