Jan Vermeer (1632-1675) pictures are genre scenes, depicting everyday life with a limpid clarity and distinct air of stillness, and a harmonious palette often focusing on yellow and blue.
He frequently depicted single women in domestic settings, as in The Lacemaker (Louvre, Paris).
Vermeer is thought to have spent his whole life in Delft. Around 40 paintings are ascribed to him. His work fell into obscurity until the mid- to late 19th century, but he is now ranked as one of the greatest Dutch artists.
In addition to genre scenes, his work comprises one religious painting, a few portraits, and two townscapes, of which the fresh and naturalistic View of Delft about 1660 (Mauritshuis, The Hague) triggered the revival of interest in Vermeer.
The Artist's Studio about 1665-1670 (Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna) is one of his most elaborate compositions; the subject appears to be allegorical, but the exact meaning remains a mystery.
Why is Jan Vermeer famous?
Jan Vermeer was a Dutch painter, active in Delft.