Saturday, 17 August 2013

The Music Lesson, Royal Collection 


It was a lovely end to the day to stroll into the National Gallery at 8pm and happen upon a concert of early music at this small but very lovely exhibition.
I was too late for a seat but listened as I wandered around looking at the paintings.
I do find that at a small exhibition, I look more intently ... at the ultramarine seat of the chair, that exquisite jug, the detail of the man's cane and the delicate paintstrokes that make his bandolier. When you peer closely - and I'd never have worked this out for myself - you can see that there is also ultramarine in the leaded lights of the windows.
And, not in this painting, but I love the blue and white Delft tiles skirting the edges of some of the rooms.
There is a fascinating display at the end of the exhibition about Vermeer's paint and techniques and I only wished that I could have had it as a leaflet in my hand - because I was backwards and forwards checking details of the paintings.

There are only four Vermeers, five if you count one that looks very dodgy. And as almost all the paintings have been drawn from the National Gallery's own collection  - with the exception of the Queen's Vermeer and the one from Kenwood - you can normally see them any time you like without having to pay to get in.

10 comments:

Sue said...

I am reading Girl With a Pearl Earring so thank for some more Vermeer.

mary said...

I loved that book, Sue.

Toffeeapple said...

I love that book too and have read it several times.

Mary, thank you so much for this post and the links which have led me into some beautiful images.

A Trifle Rushed said...

What a fabulous treat, I love small unexpected delights too. How lovely.

mary said...

If I'd only known about the concert, Jude - I was dawdling in secondhand bookshop on Charing X Road and could easily have got there sooner. But it's so good being able to go after work.

Glad you enjoyed it, Toffeeapple. I loved the film, too.

Vintage Reading said...

It's nice when you just happen upon events. Beautiful painting. Wish I knew more about art.

Lucille said...

This takes me back (far back) to the summer when I wrote up my dissertation on windows. Vermeer had some of the best. And a perfect wv: lucenti!

Anonymous said...

Do you know the Vermeer in Edinburgh (National Gallery), think its Christ in the House of Martha. Its much bigger than the ones in London and it certainly looks dodgy to me.
Best Herts

mary said...

MA windows? Now I see where your blog is coming from, Lucille.

I don't often get the chance to go to Edinburgh, Anon. And I'm certainly no expert. The 'dodgy' one in the exhibition is tiny.

Lucille said...

Oh no I mustn't leave you with a false impression. It was only a humble Fine Art BA.