Lady Writing a Letter with Her Maid (c. 1670) by Jan Vermeer

Lady Writing a Letter with Her Maid - Jan Vermeer - c.1670

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Artwork Information

TitleLady Writing a Letter with Her Maid
ArtistJan Vermeer
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions72.2 x 59.7 cm
Art MovementBaroque
Current LocationNational Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Ireland
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About Lady Writing a Letter with Her Maid

The Lady Writing A Letter With Her Maid is considered one of Johannes Vermeer’s masterpieces of the late career. Completed in 1670-1671, the painting depicts a middle-class woman seated at a desk while being attended by her maid, who acts as a messenger for the lady and her lover. The artwork follows Vermeer’s theme of revealing universal beauty in commonplace scenes occurring within domestic settings.

The painting displays an unprecedented level of artistic mastery in its use of light and its illusion of reality. Vermeer makes use of subtle color harmonies and delicate brushwork to create depth, luminosity and a soft-focus effect which serves to enhance and draw attention to his subject matter.

Despite gaining international renown as one of the greatest Dutch painters, it has undergone two major thefts within the last twenty-five years. Even so, it remains popular among museum-goers worldwide, with its current home being in the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin.

Vermeer’s Lady Writing A Letter With Her Maid continues to captivate viewers centuries later due to its outstanding artistry united with his recognizable style; portraying both everyday life and human emotions expertly through elaborate detail worked into a meticulously crafted composition.

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