girl reading a letter at an open window | 260MC

girl reading a letter at an open window

Girl reading a Letter at an Open Window is a painting finished in 1657 by the Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer.

On the first look to this painting, you can see a young girl reading a letter. Light through the window touches her faces and leaves the reflection of her face in the window.

  • According to Alejandro Vergara, “the reflection of the girl in the window emphasises the importance of the letter, which becomes the psychological axis of the painting”.
  • Her thoughts are totally absorbed in the letter.
  • The inner nature of her thoughts is reflected on her face.
Also, we know that Johannes Vermeer  Cupid and then hid it with the curtains
  • Thanks to X-rays images we know that Cupid was at the back.
  • The presence of Cupid tells us that the letter the girl is reading is a love letter.
  • Theories have stated that the painting was removed because we will just focus on the painting and not on the whole scene.

Also, you can see a bowl of apples and in this case:

  • The bowl of fruits on the bed proves that this is an extramarital love relationship: the bowl contains apples and peaches what remind us Eve’s sin.

There are nor so many painters that achieve this kind of intimacy. You can see a girl reading a letter, alone in a room, with the outside world in front of her eyes, and she just focuses her attention in the letter, in what is written there. She is indifferent to the rest of the world, and the stillness she shows I think is quite amazing. She seems as rejecting the world, the room, the house, even herself. She just reads a letter. A letter that maybe she has been expecting long time ago.

The reflection of the girl in the window emphasises the importance of the letter, which becomes the psychological axis of the painting. As in other works by Vermeer, the chair acts to clarify the spatial relations between the elements in the room, in this case the table and the end wall. The open window which reflects the girl’s face projects a slight shadow on the wall, echoing its shape and also helping to define the location of the girl’s face.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s