Vermeer Stamps

September 14th, 2013

For some reason unknown to me, the love for Vermeer’s art can express itself in unusual forms.


Oskar Maria Baksalary (Institute of Physics, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan) and George P.H. Styan (Department of Mathematics and Statistics, McGil University, Montreal), the authors of “Some Comments on the Diversity of Vermeer Paintings Depicted on Postage Stamps,” have determined that, as of 2007, 20 Vermeer paintings have been represented on postage stamps issued by 29 countries. The team applied Fisher’s index of bio diversity to compare the diversity of Vermeer paintings depicted on postage stamps with diversity of two other data sets.

The conclusion, which I trust is accurate, is the following:

And so we see that Vermeer stamps from the South Pacific are the least diverse ( = 1 : 59), while the Vermeer stamps from Europe are the most diverse ( = 19 : 95). Williams’s Nigerian hawk-moths are about in the middle of the bio diversity index range ( = 9 : 03 ), just below Vermeer stamps from the Middle East ( = 9 : 86).

The study affords a touching glimpse into what drew the first author to Vermeer. Click here to access the PDF document.

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