Milking the Maid, One More Time

The first room of the new exhibition Vermeer’s Masterpiece, The Milkmaid at the Metropolitan Museum of Art reminds you how precious this masterpiece is with a simple device: the wall is covered with a grid of 36 images of paintings. They represent all that has survived of 17th century Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer’s oeuvre of 40 or so paintings. Of those 36, The Milkmaid stands out like a jewel. The Metropolitan has The Milkmaid on loan from the Rijksmusem through November 29, and has created a small exhibition around it.

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It is a great painting, and the rest aren’t bad either. Just look at NYC’s wealth of Vermeers. And if all this is just too much sweetness and color and light for you, get a load of this guy’s codpiece:

The Archer and the Milkmaid, Andries Stock, ca. 1610

This is one of the drawing’s being shown at the Met that makes an argument for the milkmaid as sex object in 17th C. Dutch culture.

One thought on “Milking the Maid, One More Time

  1. “The Milkmaid” is truly amazing, her left arm is unbelievable… It’s hard to understand how a relatively young painter (age 25?) could have so much maturity – the painting is so complex on so many levels…

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