Learning to paint

November 22nd, 2009

The Young Vermeer

The Hague, Mauritshuis
May 12 – Aug 22, 2010

Dresden, Old Masters Picture Gallery
Sept 3– Dec 28, 2010

Edinburgh, National Gallery of Scotland
end of 2010 – Feb. 2011

Although Vermeer’s art has been consecrated by numerous special exhibitions for decades, until now, no single exhibition has focused on the myriad questions of painter’s artistic formation and early works. Hence, The Young Vermeer, which will travel from The Hague to Edinburgh and lastly to Dresden, will be the first chance to view Vermeer’s formative early works in close proximity and shall no doubt will be a milestone in Vermeer studies. All three venues feature Vermeer’s Diana and her Companions, Christ in the House of Martha and Mary and The Procuress. These three works have been completely restored so they can be appreciated in all their youthful intensity. The Dresden venue will also comprise their Girl  Reading a Letter by an Open Window.

An exhibition catalogue will provide visitors with in-depth investigation to this subject by distinguished experts of Dutch art.

The Dresden venue of the exhibition seems to be particularly rich. An ambitious educational project, based on recent investigations of the Dresden Vermeer Girl  Reading a Letter by an Open Window will include a full-scale, scientifically elaborated reconstruction of the room represented in this early masterpiece. The reconstruction will to be presented to the public next week. A website, currently under construction but already rather promising, will further explore Vermeer’s masterpiece.

Moreover, the educational project includes a 20-minute film which focused on the early Vermeer paintings and the Dresden paintings (The Procuress and Girl  Reading a Letter by an Open Window).  Numerous lectures during are planned as well as an anthology, comprehending short literary texts by different authors dealing with the Girl  Reading a Letter by an Open Window.

Due to its uniqueness, the Young Vermeer exhibition has already begun to stir international attention assuring widespread interest. As details come available, they will be reported on the Flying Fox.

2 Responses to “Learning to paint”

  1. Han Carpay

    Particularly rich… yes, in Dresden they are very lucky! Why not in The Hague? We have missed Girl Reading a Letter by an Open Window in the best exhibition ever in 1996, ‘Vermeer’ in the Mauritshuis (and of course Washington). And next year we will ‘miss’ her again, alas. There must be an opportunity for a nice exchange between The Hague and Dresden, isn’t it? Masterpieces in the Mauritshuis enough! In 1996 we travelled from Amsterdam to Dresden and back (1690 kilometers, 45 hours), only to see… that fabulous painting. When we were standing in front of Girl Reading we met another fool, also travelling a long distance: from Neurenberg.
    Please The Hague, go and talk with Dresden! I am sure you will receive much more visitors with the Girl Reading than without her.

  2. ARech

    For those who have some knowledge of the German language, here is the special website (still under construction) of the extensive educational program to the ‘Early Vermeer’-exhibit in Dresden.
    (see above all under ‘Aktivitäten’ with first images to the 1:1 reconstruction of the room depicted in ‘Girl Reading a Letter by an Open Window’ as well as preparations to the educational film which will focus on various items of Vermeer’s art and the cultural and scientific environment he lived within).
    The reconstruction of the room as well as the film are developed and realized by students and teachers form the Dresden Academy of Arts in collaboration with various institutes from the Technical University Dresden.

    The catalogue has already been announced (probably due to the change of the exhibition dates); see for instance:


    We should hope (with view to the Edinburgh-exhibition) that there will appear an English version, too – as usual.


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