The economy may be dismal, but New York is still rich in some things: people, MTA delays, and- thanks to a generous loan from the Rijksmusem- Vermeers. The Met exhibition Vermeer’s Masterpiece, The Milkmaid is open until November 29, and rarely has an exhibition been so well devoted to one picture. It provides a context and education for Vermeer’s masterpiece with a slew of exceptional Dutch paintings. The Milkmaid itself is more beautiful than I knew to expect. I saw the exhibition last night and was blown away by it. I’m going back, and I suggest that you see it and take a detour to the Frick as well.
The exhibition at the Met boasts 6 Vermeers. In addition, the Frick Collection, which was unable to loan its paintings for the Met’s exhibition, has another 3 paintings by Vermeer. Currently in an afternoon on the Upper East Side a person can give themselves an education on Vermeer with 9 of his 36 existing paintings. Not bad for a recession.
The nine paintings below are even lovelier in person (except the Study of a Young Woman–would love to hear what you think of that one). They are arranged in chronological order, the first having been painted a year before The Milkmaid.