Monday, 17 December 2007


Sunday...And although I'm totally fed up of this city there are some good things to do during the day!

The Mauritshuis is one of those Museums that really worth a visit.
Beside the incredibly beautiful building, a unique 17th-century palace and one of the most beautiful examples of Dutch classicist architecture, the fantastic interior and the exotic furnishings the Mauritshuis is home of some of the most beautiful and graceful executed paintings.

Some of the masterpieces in exhibition:

Girl with a Pearl Earring (Vermeer)

"Why is the Girl with the pearl earring Vermeer’s best-loved painting? It must have something to do with the fact that the girl looks over her shoulder, as though hoping to see who is standing behind her. This draws the viewer into the picture, suggesting that he is the one who has made the girl turn her head.

Equally important, though, are Vermeer’s fresh colours, virtuoso technique and subtle rendering of light effects. The turban is enlivened, for example, with the small highlights that are Vermeer’s trademark. The pearl, too, is very special, consisting of little more than two brushstrokes: a bright accent at its upper left and the soft reflection of the white collar on its underside.

Then there is the girl herself, who gazes at us, wide-eyed, her sensual mouth parted. She makes an uninhibited, somewhat expectant impression that cannot help exciting our interest, even though we have no idea who she is. "

View of Delft (Vermeer)

"Vermeer’s View of Delft is the most renowned townscape of 17th-century Dutch art. The transparency of its light, the majesty of its cloudy sky and the subtle reflections in the water all contribute to its overpowering impression.

Vermeer depicted the city from the southeast, with the Schie Canal in the foreground. Clouds drift past high above the city. A large dark cloud casts shadows on the water and the buildings in front. The roofs somewhat further away are lit by sunshine, which creates a feeling of great depth, since the light draws our eyes deep into the picture.

All motion has ceased; a sense of rest hangs over the scene. The boats are moored with lowered sails. A gentle breeze ruffles the surface of the water. Passers-by converse. The trees are in leaf, so it must be late spring or summer, and some time in the morning, because the sun is in the east."

Portrait of Jan Six (Rembrandt)

Why does this magisterial portrait command such universal and unconditional admiration? In first place, this has to do with Rembrandt’s fluid and deft facture. Jan Six stands before a dark background, his hat barely visible, but his face fully lit. The linen collar is sharply delineated and contrasts with his grey coat. The cuffs, gloves and gold braiding on the cloak are almost impressionistically rendered, Rembrandt’s thumb prints are impressed in the buttonholes. In second place, an important role is played by Six’s informal pose.

The portrait records a random moment in time. Six seems to be on the verge of taking his leave: he has thrown his cloak loosely over his shoulder, and is pulling on his gloves while calmly and attentively looking out at the viewer. The portrait makes a surprisingly modern and intimate impression