VERMEER: Using Ultramarine and Lapis Lazuli
Look at the dark blue apron where Vermeer had applied the expensive ultramarine. The bread, the basket and the bowl are so vibrant that they seem competing to steal the viewers’ attention. However the Focal point of the painting and the maid is the milk being poured in, by which the artist has painted the most ordinary act of daily life in a poetic statement. The bread, the basket and the bowl are so vibrant that they seem competing to steal the viewers’ attention.
Woman in Blue Reading a Letter
In this painting Woman in Blue Reading a Letter (Oil on canvas, size 46.5 39 cm), a woman is engaged in reading a letter. The subject is very feminine,and the woman standing in interior of the home refers to the contents of the letter, too. It should undoubtedly be a message from her beloved. The placement of the lady near a window and other arrangement of furniture speak about the lifestyle and living of the upper class of Vermeer’s period, the 18th century. Ultramarine and yellow have created a magical effect. About this painting, the critics says that "Nothing has ever been painted that is more noble and refined than this blue young lady". But the 'blue' has suffered due to the flowing of the water in the river of time. However it is said that the varnish is removed and the painted has gone through a renovating touches. It is believed that out of total work of Vermeer, only 36 paintings are surviving. (Image Courtesy Wikimedia commons)