The mysterious Vermeer - The secret behind a 350-year-old painting | DW Documentary

  görünümler 472,217

DW Documentary

DW Documentary

Yıl önce

What’s the significance of the discovery of a naked Cupid in a 350-year-old painting by Vermeer? After years of study, the hidden figure was revealed in the "Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window" painting, housed at the Dresden Gemäldegalerie. It was a sensational find.
The film traces the many twists and turns that this picture has experienced in its history. The justification for re-exhibiting the painting in its new form is a sensation: the Cupid was apparently painted over after the artist’s death.
The enigmatic paintings of Jan Vermeer have fascinated art lovers for centuries. His oeuvre has been one of the most difficult for experts to conclusively decipher and has frequently been the subject of controversial discussions on a global level. Now, a gallery in the German city of Dresden has assembled the world’s top Vermeer aficionados, high-tech imaging techniques and plenty of cash. Why? Because what began as a regular restoration of a painting has now resulted in the radical alteration of an iconic image.
But who decides how paintings from the past should be analyzed? And how to respond to any surprising findings? This film ponders the prerogative of interpretation in art, in the past and the present. Will the revelation of Cupid finally help to uncover the enduring secrets of Vermeer?
#documentary #dwdocumentary
DW Documentary gives you knowledge beyond the headlines. Watch top documentaries from German broadcasters and international production companies. Meet intriguing people, travel to distant lands, get a look behind the complexities of daily life and build a deeper understanding of current affairs and global events. Subscribe and explore the world around you with DW Documentary.
Subscribe to:
⮞ DW Documentary (English): / dwdocumentary
⮞ DW Documental (Spanish): / dwdocumental
⮞ DW Documentary وثائقية دي دبليو (Arabic): / dwdocarabia
⮞ DW Doku (German): / dwdoku
⮞ DW Documentary हिन्दी (Hindi): / dwdochindi
For more visit:
Follow DW Documentary on Instagram: / dwdocumentary
Follow DW Documental on Facebook: / dwdocumental
We kindly ask viewers to read and stick to the DW netiquette policy on our channel:

@lucasjames7524 Yıl önce
This is the kind of documentary that makes DW simply wonderful! Thank you for this journey into art and history! Beautiful. 🙂
@NathainArdoin Yıl önce
Here, Here!
@medea27 Yıl önce
I'm a big supporter of utilising science & technology to peel back the layers of time to see these masterpieces _as the artist intended._ I find it incredibly ironic when art critics & academics protest restorations like this one, because they are effectively saying "I'm not interested in what _Vermeer_ was trying to communicate with this painting... I'm only interested in what _I think_ he was trying to say based on my interpretation of another artist's alterations." I think it's an insult to the artist to put your own ego before their artistic intent... to want future generations to continue to see the version _you_ like & are comfortable with, instead of to how it looked when it left Vermeer's easel (or as close as modern sympathetic restoration allows).
@uiscepreston Yıl önce
Then "as intended", the painting is busy, obvious and lame.
@mr.billthrower7392 Yıl önce
@@uiscepreston O well, Vermeer painted it like that. Why not just copy it and alter it to your liking instead of destroying a masters artwork.
@kimclarke5018 9 aylar önce
Exactly. Restoring the painting to its original form, and taking away the alterations made after the artist died by others puts it back into the condition that vemeer intended. Doesn’t matter if they don’t like it, it’s now how he painted it in the first place.
@IRGeamer 9 aylar önce
Agreed. "Removing this erasure of history is erasing history" is just gibberish.
@debbylou5729 9 aylar önce
These are irrelevant. Materials were often painted over with items bleeding through the finished art. They mean nothing
@melissawalker1982 Yıl önce
It's possible to appreciate both versions. The image always existed, just not to the visible eye. I think the discovery is positive for art appreciation and further curiosity about Vermeer's work.
@lindamarsh6711 10 aylar önce
I don’t think history is being removed, it’s being returned in its original state! Love it!❤🇨🇦👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
@jwilcox4726 9 aylar önce
In Delft, Holland, Nederlands. That's is where you get REAL Blue Willow dishwear. The immatation is cheaper and goes in dishwasher/mircowave. China uses the best paint. xo
@ernie7453 8 aylar önce
I believe it is a paradox: obliteration by incorporation.
@PaulMoses-gj2sq 3 aylar önce
I think having the painting come slightly to life was a wonderful touch. Well done.
@BloodyNigerian Yıl önce
Finally! Another classic on art history! Your art history documentaries are second to none, DW.
@robertbunkin7026 Yıl önce
J. Fitzsimmons is the only commentator who mentions that this same painting of cupid appears in two other works by Vermeer. It astonished me that this documentary made no mention of this, or of the fact that Vermeer often included paintings, maps and tapestries in his backgrounds! So no surprise that the cupid was there all along. Paintings were often altered by "restorers", cut down to fit frames, or deleting unfashionable background "distractions".
@bend3rbot 9 aylar önce
DW is a competent documentary producer, but not an art history specialist. I could estimate a good handful of these, important to assist greater understanding, omissions to have occurred by the very nature of interview-only process, rather than a designed exposé.
@argusfleibeit1165 9 aylar önce
I did notice another painting was VERY briefly shown here, 23:41 "A Young Woman Standing", featuring the cupid.
@teknoaija1762 9 aylar önce
It s narrator,not commentator!Language!
@LaoZi2023 9 aylar önce
And many of them do a horrendous job in their "restorations!"
@charleswyler4268 9 aylar önce
@@argusfleibeit1165 It's just about the same "cupid", too, and isn't this cupid holding a playing card shown later as part of "Girl reading a letter.................."?
@cheri238 9 aylar önce
This documentary is excellent. Vermeer is one of my favorites of the masters. Thank you, I learned more.❤️
@avrilgardiner9111 9 aylar önce
To have made the decision to remove the overpainting 30 yeara after we knew there was a cupid takes incredible guts. Of course it opens a fascinating new debate. The history of this specific work is remarkable.
@ReadingRambo152 8 aylar önce
It’s interesting that this documentary is about how people throughout time have changed art to fit the times, and then, using AI, show us a modern interpretation. It allows us to see behind the curtain, something the artist never intended us to see.
@arbaz79 Yıl önce
Thank you DW for this amazing documentary regarding art.I have fascination with old paintings especially from the renaissance period.Please keep making such documentaries regarding art.Thank you❤️.
@26beegee Yıl önce
I was lucky enough to visit the Mauritshuis Museum to see Girl With A Pearl Earring. The painting is breathtaking and simply glows but, the museum is also beautiful. The perfect setting for a masterpiece.
@n00bspanker Yıl önce
Imagine how many other pieces of art there are out there that have been unnoticeably altered
@uiscepreston Yıl önce
Or intentionally altered. Or destroyed because someone with an Xray machine thought they knew better.
@karenneill9109 Aylar önce
There was one where a slave was painted over. Fascinating.
@clairemacauliffecarroll263 Yıl önce
I saw his art display when it came to Dublin with my art class. His work is truly phenomnal
@petersdotter1 Yıl önce
A wonderful documentary and discussion. My only regret is the animation of the girl, letter, and beyond the window, which represent someone other than Vermeer putting their stamp on it.
@phranerphamily Yıl önce
I love the fact they were brave and brought it back to the artists vision
@uiscepreston Yıl önce
That doesn't make it any better. He originally painted Girl Sleeping with a dog in the doorway. Should we trash that painting to bring back Fido just because he at point intended there to be a dog?!
@kimclarke5018 9 aylar önce
@@uiscepreston this is the second time you’ve been obnoxious. What part of it’s what the artist painted in the first place and was altered by others did you not get the memo on. The utter idiocy!
@curtisgrindahl446 9 aylar önce
I was informed by a friend in Rotterdam that there will be a major exhibit of Vermeer's work at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam this year with 450,000 tickets ALREADY been sold. I adore his work and visited the Mauritshuis museum when visiting my friend eleven years ago... so I could see Vermeer's work, including the Girl with the Pearl Earring. This is a brilliant presentation. DW is a wonderful source of information. Thank you.
@straya4837 Yıl önce
DW always delivers great content. He was the most innovative & evocative, IMO.
@elizabethmcglothlin5406 Yıl önce
A truly remarkable painter, one of my favorites.
@jillhbaudhaan Yıl önce
This is fascinatingly educational! It sparks so many avenues of exploration in history.
@cattleyaarcade7300 Aylar önce
I love the interviews of all these curators! They are so eloquent and bubbly - really makes the insight interesting
@sachinrv1 Yıl önce
The billion dollar questio is whether the painting is beautiful or the confusion it leaves in the mind of the observer. Each learned observer will have his or her version of interpretation.This only adding to the confusion already exist. Thanks DW for yet another good doc.
@michaelodonnell824 Yıl önce
I love the Recreation of the Painting. Wonderful idea. As the camera moves, one is never sure whether it is the painting or the recreation one is seeing - and then one might notice the letter move, or the girl blink, or birds fly past the window...
@jpkatz1435 9 aylar önce
Yes... and no, it does force me to pay the attention to the painting, trying to determin what is "real" and what is added, but that particular effort is a distraction from engaging and being engaged by the picture as a whole.
@user-uu5zc4eg3j 25 gün önce
Vermeer s portraits are so beautiful an realistic, he was a real master 🎨🖌️😊
@jeanniecampbell1374 10 aylar önce
Well I learned a lot ..such an interesting documentary thank you so much for posting ..I liked the hidden cupid version but glad to know the cupid is there too I find him a bit large and imposing ..I do like a mystery ..hard to know really as both versions are beautiful .
@vexguine Yıl önce
We, as humans, crave drama in art. Since caves. Can be a man hunting a cow or a couple discussing their relationship (like in Edward Hopper paintings). This picture gives us the thrill of what is happening in the girl's head. Psychological drama. Also the fruits spreaded on table gives motion. Like some furious reaction just had happened before. Amazing piece.
@Boricuaart Yıl önce
I’m utterly amazed, flabbergasted, rendered speechless. I don’t know what to think. Conservators conserve, restorers restore. But a famous painting will create hype. And in the art world hype is money
@jfitzsimmons4825 Yıl önce
The painting of Cupid, the same painting also appears in another work by Vermeer, Girl Interrupted in Her Music and also found in the painting Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window until the artist decided to eliminate it. The painting is a work by Cesar van Everdingen which must have belonged to Vermeer (in the inventory of his widow's possessions in 1676 a painting of this subject is mentioned). As De Jongh has indicated, the painting of Cupid was inspired by an emblem in Otto van Veen's Amorum Emblemata, published in Antwerp in 1608 which alludes to faithful love. It seems likely that by including this painting in his composition, Vermeer alludes to a concept of love which includes fidelity. (Copied)
@tr33m00nk Yıl önce
@J fitzsimmons "...until the artist decided to eliminate it." Do you mean it was Vermeer who over-painted the cupid? If you know this, I wonder why the conservators in this video, who should know this also, didn't say so?? I was going to ask why no one in the video mentioned dating the paint layer that was 'scraped' off the cupid. There was certainly enough technology available for them to do so. And isn't it one of the FIRST things done BEFORE 'pealing off' a paint layer???
@lporter5408 Yıl önce
​@@tr33m00nk watch again. the video absolutely tells you whether vermeer or someone else painted over the cupid.
@tr33m00nk Yıl önce
@@lporter5408 Yeah, I know. @0:57-1:04 the narrator explicitly states that “…the cupid had been painted over by another artist after Vermeer’s death…”. I guess my ironic question was too subtle. But my other question stands - why did no one in the video mention dating the paint layer that was 'scraped' off the cupid? They seemed to be trying to make the 'presentation' compelling & 'mysterious' when all they needed to 'solve the mystery' was say "the over-painting was dated to ----". The info about the other cupids was interesting, but the 'mysterious' aspect of the presentation seemed artificial.
@arslongavitabrevis5136 Yıl önce
@@tr33m00nk I do agree with you, I hate all this hype, typical of our days where EVERYTHING has to be spectacular and shocking. In other words, cheap sensationalism.
@charlesdayon8420 Yıl önce
As far as changes to works of art, we can sometimes blame the owners of artworks who want two of the same size or two with with the same color background etc. Sometimes a dealer will make changes to please a certain customer with certain tastes or a painting that will fit into particular frame or fit into a special spot in the wall or room. After all lot of people have art instincts and want to contribute to a work of art, make it better, as it were. O'my Jesus forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven especially those who have most need of thy mercy. Amen.
@elvenkind6072 Yıl önce
Thanks for the documentary, DW! Great work as usual, and a perfect start of the weekend, to start the morning watching this massive dose of Kultur.
@dotpeat1372 Yıl önce
Brilliant and excellently presented; many thanks DW!
@laraaston8675 Yıl önce
Wow she needs some straighteners for her hair for xmas
@user-ef7gw6pf4m Aylar önce
I would have loved to know the study work and tests made to identify when the overpaint occurred. As well as the materials used and the equipment. Well all the analysis that help them arrive to the conclusion to remove the over paint.
@lisamartinez6899 Yıl önce
Love this ! Not surprising for the time period someone painted over it
@8pelagic610 Yıl önce
It's hilarious that the exact same cupid appears at 23:41 in VerMeer's painting, "A Young Woman Standing at a Virginal" but this comparison is not mentioned by any of the experts. Also, the animation is a bizarre parallel to the conservator who "improved" the original by overpainting it.
@neillgj Yıl önce
Indeed an oversight. The experts span many disciplines and I feel more time is wrongly given to the critic and his subjective theories rather than the more pragmatic historians and archivists. An oversight, too, to make no mention of van Meegeren whose forgeries filled the perceived absence of 'early' works. You may be aware of the overpainted fountain in Rubens' painting of his 2nd wife in a fur coat. It illustrates, perhaps, that she posed in the open air in their garden rather than the privacy of a bedroom and therefore against later sensibilities. There is no doubt in my mind that the restored Cupid is the correct decision. That for several hundred years viewers saw it differently has no meaning for me other than they were robbed of Vermeer's full intentions by the "improving" conservator who chose or was instructed to overpaint it.
@mathematician1234 Yıl önce
Excellent observation! The cupids are virtually identical. If Vermeer had so few paintings, how could the experts possibly miss commenting on this? Another commenter mentions a third Vermeer with a cupid: Girl Interrupted at Her Music. I was amazed that I had to wait until the last two minutes for them to connect the cupid to the letter, and even then they do not come out and directly say that it is a love letter, which I had been thinking as soon as the cupid was mentioned. Also, in the last two minutes the expert refers to the "obvious symbolism" of the hidden playing card (which is not hidden in the other Vermeer painting's cupid). Well, it's not obvious to me what that symbolism is, because I am no expert. Can anyone explain the "obvious" symbolism of a playing card in cupid's hand? Is it that love strikes you randomly, like a card dealt from a deck?
@8pelagic610 Yıl önce
@@mathematician1234 The Netherlands had a secular bourgeois class that wanted personal portraits and allegories as topics rather than biblical narratives. VerMeer made a series of allegorical paintings, and I associate these Cupid paintings with his allegorical body of work. There must have been a market for romance themed works, and Cupid would have a sort of benign association rather than "The Procuress" (Prostitution) or "Young Woman and Soldier" (Drinking and Dashing Stories Lead to Moral Downfall) allegories from the VerMeer's body of work. Also see Rembrandt and his series of portraits of Dutch militias for a similar treatment of secular demand for paintings. If you are looking for further reading, I highly recommend Simon Schama's "Embarrassment of Riches" for a great read on the Dutch golden age. Apologies for the tome. p.s. I think Cupid's card is blank as a comment on the uncertain nature of romance.
@yvettewilliamselliott8851 Yıl önce
I also found the animation odd and unnecessary - it is the interiority of the young woman that is important for me. I don’t need to see her move, and Vermeer cannot have imagined that she ever would.
@mn4169 Yıl önce
My favorite Vermeer,
@michaeljohnangel6359 Yıl önce
But this is absurd. If the Cupid's hand with the card has been painted over by Vermeer when he painted the curtain, then surely it was Vermeer who painted out the Cupid. An excellent video. Thanks!!!
@olafshomkirtimukh9935 Yıl önce
I agree, sir. You could read my more extensive comment on this "destructive" restoration.
@couchphotography8861 9 aylar önce
So interesting and informative. Fascinating to see that the same cupid appears in the Young Woman Standing at a Virginal picture at 42.26. Personally, I think the Woman Reading a Letter should have been left without the cupid, it makes the small picture look cluttered. I remember being at the Frick Collection a few years ago, and I kept going back to look at the Officer and Young Girl painting...stunningly beautiful with its use of light and shadow. Wanted to take it home, but had to be content with a print! Excellent documentary and loved the animations too.
@victoriamilonas1942 Yıl önce
You don't have to tell me that there's mystery in Vermeer. I thought the documentary was about the decision making process to expose the underlying paint and force us to rethink one of the precious few works he left. Then we had animation!
@Meine.Postma Yıl önce
Badly translated from German but I like the girl with the braids. I still have questions though, the main one being how they came to the conclusion Vermeer himself did not overpaint the Cupid
@NickPenlee Yıl önce
My opinion is that if he didn't over-paint the same cupid figure in the painting shown at 23:41 then why would he paint out the cupid in the other featured painting?
@Jen39x Yıl önce
I always want to know the same and the with or without playing card complicates it further. I really prefer the painting visually without Cupid as it to “busy” with
@gawkthimm6030 Yıl önce
old style color pigments use very distinctive pigments with noticeable (with modern tech) trace particles that can be determined to have come from a certain era, caused by where and when the paint was mixed and with which resources and from where. So if a dutch painter in 1650's painted this, and the covering paint dont match the underlying, they would have come from different sources.. I cant be certain thats how they did it, but thats something I have heard of being investigated with modern tech on old art. So as conservators can be certain to match the precise color if a restoration is needed.
@vysharra Yıl önce
It was reported by the experts that the age of the binding within the paint of the Cupid and the overpaint, as well as the amount of dirt trapped between the layers, revealed that decades passed between the layers. Since the painting was completed in 1657-59 and he died in 1670, it was only a matter of maths.
@gungari1775 Yıl önce
Thank you so much for this documentary. I love it.
@flashladderacrobat Yıl önce
Oh oh oh this is so fantastic! Thank you DW for these wonderful documentaries!
@darlamcfarland3323 11 aylar önce
There is no question here. If part of Vermeer's work was covered by another person, it must be uncovered. The loss would be too great if it were left as is.
@12235117657598502586 Yıl önce
So… She’s actually reading a love letter, whilst being overlooked by Cupid 💘
@donnapido3824 Yıl önce
Look at the expression on that cupid's face. He's not happy.
@brittanyt729 Yıl önce
Did they mention how the researchers determined that the artist himself didn’t just decide he didn’t like the Cupid he painted. Couldn’t he have been the one to paint over it?
@abbofun9022 Aylar önce
The paint was too young, it originated from after Vermeers’ death.
@MasonVeil Yıl önce
So it remains true the art critic is still the enemy of the artist. They refuse to believe something that has been proven. Rather than accept the reality they instead dig their heels in when it is revealed that Vermeer used a lens and a mirror to match pigment to light. And that is it. No special style outside of the warping of the lens. He was a master at using technology for art and all his works show it. Doesn't change the results. Just makes other people look dumb when they put their ideas on to an artist as if they knew them. Even mistaking it for a Rembrandt. And now they cry about the painting being restored to it's original after some art critic wanted it painted over to match THEIR idea of what art is.
@donnalowe9334 Yıl önce
There is always a little dog to pull the curtain back ? hmmm...🙃
@ravingcyclist624 2 aylar önce
My impression is that the overpainting of the cupid can be authenticated to have occurred after Vermeer. As such, it is right to reveal the cupid. Now, what about the arm with the playing card? Who placed that behind the curtain? Should that also be revealed?
@queenofwater8783 2 aylar önce
I just got to see a number of Vermeer paintings at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, recently. What a joy.
@2010Tigresa 9 aylar önce
The reason why he had enough time to paint, although he fathered more than ten children, is not wasting time going around. He was focused on his work.
@osks Yıl önce
A truly magnificent presentation!
@annhalton1963 Yıl önce
I don't understand why people are so shocked. Artists often paint over things they don't like.
@johndoe-vf4un 2 aylar önce
I'm curious why the comparison wasn't made between this painting and the other Vermeer painting shown titled 'A Young Woman Standing at a Virginal', which looks to have the exact same cupid painting hanging on the back wall in the portrait? Other than that, a very well done doc, albeit a bit drawn out.
@krazykkarl Yıl önce
I highly recommend the documentary "tim's vermeer." It's about how vermeer painted using a reflection off of a mirror.
@stighelmer1265 Yıl önce
And Secret Knowledge by David Hockney.
@beeperlove Yıl önce
I tried the experiment with a black and white photo and it works! I painted an photo-realistic painting having never painted before. So worth trying
@jenniferk9242 Yıl önce
Of course we will never know if he did paint with mirrors or if he just had an incredible natural perception of color and light and the great talent to display that in his paintings. I thoroughly enjoyed Tim's Vermeer and thought it excellent!
@avaangel433 Yıl önce
I agree, can't recommend Tim's Vermeer enough.
@Meine.Postma Yıl önce
Vermeer did sketch on the canvas beneath the painting and he changed the compositions by overpainting part. So I don't know if he really used that technique but it is a nice documentary
@Joseph-jx8bl Yıl önce
One of the best painters ever!
@judeirwin2222 9 aylar önce
It’s shocking to see individuals handling old books and other valuable documents without gloves. Don’t they know the damage they are causing?
@ericscottstevens Yıl önce
Overpainting simply could have been accomplished to make the painting match an interior wall for whoever owned it at the time. Alas, the cherubs willy dangle was probably the real central issue. But hey look at it this way this Vermeer painting survived, Van Gogh sent home many paintings to his mother, she promptly used the paintings to plug holes in the fence of her chicken coop. Soon with the ravages of mud, water, and chicken cursing's......... those paintings were lost forever.
@HarlemVega520 Yıl önce
@davidlee6720 9 aylar önce
one of the greatest painters ever, saw the miraculous in everyday , domestic moments , dead in in his forties. tragic.
@ianclarke3627 Aylar önce
He is a superb artist
@noeraldinkabam 9 aylar önce
The same cupid painting is seen in a other Vermeer: ‘Lady standing at a virginal’ I’m always surprised this never gets mentioned.
@strangetimez Yıl önce
Thanks DW,dope content as usual!
@marymalyon454 Yıl önce
It is entirely possible that Vermeer or someone later realized that the presence of Cupid could have been interpreted by the religious authorities as a pagan theme and would have been frowned upon most emphatically by protestants. Or Vermeer himself might have found the Cupid too corny.
@olafshomkirtimukh9935 Yıl önce
The best thing would've been to create a life-like digital copy of the _Girl Reading a Letter_ with the _full cupid figure_ (not the partly exposed one, as has been done) in the background, and hang it in another room, so viewers could educated themselves about how the work had looked fresh off Vermeer's hands. I strongly feel that *the painting itself* , as it'd come down to us, *should NOT have been modified!* The blank wall used to make the young lady the only claimant of our attention, the cupid (a mythical entity) destroys our total absorption in and identification with the girl (a fellow human being). Even the enigma of the nature of the letter is gone: it could've been anything from the bearer of the news of a death (in war? on a journey? by disease?); a creditor's demand for payment; an invitation to a baptism to her child's first work at school; a banal grocery list. Now, because of the cupid popping up, the letter can only be a love letter, I'd say the most obvious and least imaginative thing it could've been; although (as one of the curators says) we don't know if it's a bearer of happy tidings, say, a marriage proposal, or a sad one, like a broken engagement, it still dramatically shrinks the range of things the scribbled note in her hand could be. On principle one would be against any kind of tampering with a work of art, but here, I would submit (almost as an exception to the rule) that for once an "over-painting" had actually improved a "painting". I mourn the destruction of one of my all-time favourite piece of art by its pedantic restorers. Or is it technology glorying in its own vanity?
@brandinginpajamas Yıl önce
@arslongavitabrevis5136 Yıl önce
I fully agree with you and I deeply resent what they have done. I am also suspicious since the filmmakers DID NOT make it clear when was overpainted, something that can be established fairly accurately with the sophisticated methods at their disposal. There is another very important point to consider: How can they be sure it was not Vermeer who overpainted the cupid? There are hundreds of paintings with overpainted details that the artist later considered irrelevant or inappropriate. With the same ridiculous criteria, restorers should be adding pieces to some mutilated paintings that we know were cut off by some idiotic owner because it did not fit in his/her room.
@Pau-tc9wj Yıl önce
Well said. I totally agree with you and also feel sad at the destruction of this once mysterious painting.
@wabisabi6875 2 aylar önce
Look at the painting at 23:42, "A Young Woman Standing at a Virginal." I find it very odd that no one made any comments about the cupid in this painting being the same as the one in the "Girl Reading...." Surely someone has catalogued the paintings captured inside Vermeer's own paintings, i.e., what paintings of other painters did Vermeer have in his studio as props?
@carmenbollen7562 8 aylar önce
Amazing,even more after visiting the great exposition in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam 👌
@jeff__w Yıl önce
This video manages to avoid answering all the interesting questions regarding the covering up and uncovering of the hidden cupid in _Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window:_ • What are the competing theories, if any, as to why the cupid was covered up? • How is it known that someone other than Vermeer decades later covered up the cupid? • Was there an internal debate about uncovering the cupid and, if so, what was that about and why did the pro-uncovering side prevail? • What were the “cutting edge” techniques (aside from a scalpel) used in the process? • How much of the covering was removed (we see various amounts at various points in the video) and, if the entire covering was not removed, why not? • What is the playing card referred to briefly at the end and is that covered by the green curtain? If so, is that something that Vermeer himself covered up? Instead we get some weird and superfluous chatter at the end about the role of museums. If there was some relevance of that to the uncovering of the cupid, I missed it. And I’ll add that the animations by VR Plunge were both fascinating to watch and just a bit off to me-the edges of the girl were a bit too sharp, the reflection in the window was frozen while the girl’s head moved ever so slightly, and the location of the house on what appeared to be a sandy bank 41:29 seemed, well, not quite right-I imagine there would have been an actual street (maybe the Oude Langendijk where Vermeer’s house was located) outside the place.
@dannylim3318 Yıl önce
You can do some research and discover some of those answers yourself. This documentary only addresses some of the issues behind the painting as it is limited by the length of video.
@jeff__w Yıl önce
@@dannylim3318 Sure, anyone can but (1) the video purports to be _about_ the uncovering of the cupid and the questions I raised are central to that so it’s not unreasonable to expect that they’d be covered in the video, especially since many of them are touched upon in it; (2) some of the people in the video would probably have firsthand knowledge of the questions I raised and could answer those questions definitively and fairly easily-which I, doing research on my own, could not; and (3) the video spends _a lot_ of time on the history of the painting, and, again, some time on some entirely superfluous issues-if there was a time constraint. some of that time could have been better spent on the topic of the covering and uncovering the cupid - again, what the video is supposed to be _about_ - and not as much on those topics.
@uiscepreston Yıl önce
The cupid was covered up because it is a massive distraction and adds nothing but heavy-handed symbolism to a painting that was rendered perfectly subtle and fine in its simplistic mystique.
@arslongavitabrevis5136 Yıl önce
@@jeff__w I agree with you Jeff, some nitwits need things to be spelled out
@arslongavitabrevis5136 Yıl önce
@@uiscepreston Beautifully put! Besides, we CANNOT be sure it was not Vermeer who changed his mind and overpainted the cupid.
@mn4169 Yıl önce
Great documentary, I am big fan of Vermeer. You get sucked into the paintings.Someone or the Church maybe, must have considered the naked figure in the corner obscene or irreligious. The Protestant Church spread its moral teachings and forced opinions on all levels of life, they stifled free thought and emotions of mankind .
@___beyondhorizon4664 6 aylar önce
Whenever someone mentioned Dutch painter, i immediately think Van Gogh. I can feel his pain, the desires for lights .
@stonehenges5722 Yıl önce
Vermeer has painted my favorite: Girl with a pearl earring. That painting has more soul than any other..
@avrilgardiner9111 9 aylar önce
How do we know who did the overpainting? Crucial question, I guess. Or is it? I just love it. And all of this happened just 3 years ago.
@uiscepreston Yıl önce
I think the painting looks better without the cupid. My issue is that the edge of the window and the edge of the cupid frame make a vertical line that is aesthetically unpleasant. The blank wall gives an air of minimal desolation emanating upwardly from her head. The cupid is busy. And yes, as symbolism, it is annoyingly and cloyingly obvious. We don't need to be lead by the hand by art. Restoring it, whether it was Vermeer's work or not, has destroyed the painting. Way to go, nerds. Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. You'd have us all eaten by raptors because you got published.
@briansmith9439 Yıl önce
The overpainting hides the work of Vermeer, ergo it hides history. Removing the overpainting must reveal history,; it can not be "tantamount to removing history." Either the translation is very poor or the speaker is conceding the painting he prefers will no longer be a Vermeer but a Vemeer-plus-one.
@Lora-M-NY Yıl önce
I had to read this 3 times to understand, but it’s 4:02am….lol. You are so RIGHT. “Tantamount to Removing history” is revealing history if there is an unknown work of art. The top painting WAS revealed & *known* while the work beneath it has never been. Hopefully that’s what you meant lol
@ktoyfl Yıl önce
The translation seems to be correct. The persons argued that the picture was in the overpainted state for centuries and is now lost forever (!). You can agree or not but it is a fair argument.
@laurenglass4514 9 aylar önce
Think the conservation thought process has changed, now it is do not put paint on that can’t be removed and protect what the artist painted. Not change the painting
@kimclarke5018 9 aylar önce
@@ktoyfl since the overpainting was not done by the artist himself, and thus the Cupid was always meant to be seen. They revealed what the artist in question painted originally. So actually your not right, nor are those who said it should have been left. Further it changes what you see, and the interpretation of the appearance of the Cupid in the background.
@bobjary9382 9 aylar önce
​@ktoyfl Thats my take on it too . Of course revealing the original is important but the trajectory of the work over centuries is also very relevant. Its a painting and a forensic journey which makes it even more factinating .
@davidc5191 Yıl önce
Background music is from one of favorite composers - Michael Nyman - as heard in various movies by Peter Greenaway, such as The Draughtsman's Contract and Zed & Two Noughts.
@rhythmdroid 11 aylar önce
Yeah the localization in some DW docs has been lacking. I've noticed a number of mispronunciations as well.
@a-complished4406 Yıl önce
Fascinating. Great documentary
@mxferro 9 aylar önce
The painting should have NEVER!!! been touched by another artist to change the intent of what Vermeer wanted in the original image. Eliminating the paint over was completely appropriate and helps all of us to know exactly what Vermeer was conveying.
@bobbifoth5492 2 aylar önce
You’re rambling - stating the obvious What original artist wants their originals over painted ? Duh
@rhythmdroid 11 aylar önce
The fact that people currently debate what can be shown at a museum baffles me...and that we are supposed to now question museums because they are somehow "monarchic". I hope that in the future we look upon this temporary period of questioning with shame.
@ArtU4All Yıl önce
The statement about The Netherlands in 1632 only stresses how low mankind has fallen since then despite all the tech advancements 😔
@GehanAdel Yıl önce
This documentary actually this kind of documentaries which you can so excited when you watch and also it still light for your brain 🧠 so you can watch any time 🌷 thanks a lot
@piccalillies Yıl önce
Wow, this knocks me out. I wrote a paper on this painting once; she always seemed sad to me, not in love!
@katarzynamuszynska5426 Yıl önce
What was opinion that Girl seems to be sad , reading letter from who? I like dutch paintings Vermeer ,Rembrandt,Van Gogh
@katarzynamuszynska5426 Yıl önce
I think every person has own opinion
@kbombaci2670 Yıl önce
I agree with you - I always felt she looked pensive and slightly somber, as if her letter contained news or conversation that wasn’t cheerful or a love letter. It is such a beautiful painting and I am glad to see it fully revealed.
@evakolbinger53 Aylar önce
Great presentation! Just asking, though, when will those massive gilded frames be replaced? They detract from most masters' paintings. Try freezing the frame where The Girl With the Pearl Earring is on the work easel and see the face light up.
@daytonagreg8765 9 aylar önce
So what does it look like today? Was that shown in this documentary? I saw various zoom in & zoom outs, and the qupid. Not sure I saw a clear presentation of its state today. Thanks 🙏
@agabacalvin3820 Yıl önce
Thanks so much dw documentaries team. God bless you
@matangkadnakapre Yıl önce
i like that cupid appears to be "pushing" the curtains aside so that the viewer can see the private moment of the girl reading a letter.
@brandinginpajamas Yıl önce
Really great doc , I can appreciate both versions but there is something quiet and beautiful without the angel. Just my opinion.
@blackbird5634 Yıl önce
''Tim's Vermeer'' 2013, is an interesting look into how Vermeer might have been able to paint the images he did.
@JohnTLyon 9 aylar önce
Painting over old canvasses was, and is, a very common practice. Particularly if you are on a budget. Vermeer was the master of the Dutch school of light. Doing this to his canvas seems like sacrilege.
@donnapido3824 Yıl önce
I note that the cupid in this painting is the same child in the same pose as the one in 'Lady Standing in front of a Virginal' The one in Girl REading a Letter has a sad or disappointed look on his face while the other has a dumb wooden look. Do we know who the little boy was? and how he came to pose for Vermeer?
@Theater00jock 9 aylar önce
We will likely never know, however the painting was most likely not even by Vermeer. It was very common to use paintings by other artists in the background of your work (paintings that were in the collection of the artist themselves). Experts say the painting of Cupid was likely by Caesar van Everdingen, who we have some similar surviving Cupids from.
@donnapido3824 9 aylar önce
@@Theater00jock Thanks!
@nelsonx5326 Yıl önce
This is mind blowing!
@ilpezkato Yıl önce
Excellent! (despite Nyman's music) thank you very much for uploading it!
@AndiDuck 9 aylar önce
I have a reproduction of "Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window" in my bedroom . I love there's more to her story.
@wabisabi6875 2 aylar önce
Soundtrack at 10:15 (and later) is the intro to a Brian Eno song! Hats off to DW production! A fine expression of your own "bon gout."
@trueDdg4023 Aylar önce
Yes, it's "By This River" from Before and After Science. Drove me crazy until I found it.
@Hummmminify Yıl önce
For goodness sake you guys there should be no discussion.....the painting should be the one that left the artist's studio......that someone found out what it really was is wonderful. Vermeer was telling a story in the painting. We, the viewer should see the story as Vermeer told it. Would you want someone tinkering with Shakespeare?
@vaughangarrick 9 aylar önce
DW giving BBC a run for their money. Vermeer is one of my all time favourite painters
@sandriagutierrez2605 Yıl önce
Really enjoyed this documentary! Thank you
@gauriblomeyer1835 9 aylar önce
My compliments, a wonderful presentation!
@LaoZi2023 9 aylar önce
Speaking from the viewpoint of a painter, I would want my painting to be restored to the original condition to what it was intended to be...who could argue the point?
@patstokes7040 Yıl önce
This is a horrible thing they have done. How do they know "someone else" covered it? They don't know that someone's name so where is that information coming from.
@susiefisch 2 aylar önce
From an art blog on-line: At first, it was believed that Vermeer did the overpainting, but in 2019, this was rejected after analyses were conducted with new technology. X-ray fluorescence examination, infrared reflectography imaging, and microscopic analyses showed that the overpainting happened several decades after Vermeer's death.k
@oskarobit Yıl önce
Nice watching. I hope the documents the like of 13:19 were facsimiles and not the authentic ones. I felt shivers when the lady touched the pages as if nothing, with naked hands... My eyeballs almost fell down.
@brandinginpajamas Yıl önce
Wow smh
@RivkaPotchebutzkyArt Yıl önce
They shouldn’t have touched the painting! There is legitimacy in the development of history. The fact that we have today the technology does not allow us to act upon it when ever we want to have fresh blonde poured into the debates of art historians.
@peggygraham6129 2 aylar önce
You are not erasing history!You are restoring it.
@aphrabenn3233 2 aylar önce
I can’t believe for a minute that Vermeer would place that monstrosity there. It is completely out of place and disproportionate. The mystery the painting exudes would be ruined. I hope they will cover it back up.
@Glorfinniel Aylar önce
I agree. Glad I'm not alone. The painting looks too busy now and cupid is a distracting from the main subject...the woman.
@davidlittlefield2483 Yıl önce
The original Vermeer painting was greatly improved and turned into a masterpiece by the removal of the cupid, eliminating superfluous information, leaving a large blank wall, that leads the eyes without distraction, to focus on the beautiful young woman reading a private letter and is an invitation involving the viewer to deduce the contents of the mysterious letter. If I had been there in person and told Vermeer to simplify his painting by removing the chubby cherub, he would have replied with a few colorful expletives no doubt, "Everyvons a critic! It's my painting and I will paint it like I vant. Now, get the blank out a here."
@4GreaterWorldPeace Yıl önce
Ha-ha! And he's right, everyvon is a critic!
@charleswyler4268 9 aylar önce
Maybe Vermeer really did overpaint the cupid himself? I didn't notice any time frame mentioned for the overpainting.
@davidlittlefield2483 9 aylar önce
@@charleswyler4268 I would have. LOL
John Singer Sargent (Full Length): Madame X and Dr. Pozzi
Great Art Explained
görünümler 403 B
Ne Gemiler Yaktım 1. Bölüm
Ne Gemiler Yaktım
görünümler 1,8 Mn
The Dutch Golden Age: Contemporaries of Rembrandt and Vermeer
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
görünümler 32 B
North Korea's most powerful woman | DW Documentary
DW Documentary
görünümler 2,6 Mn
Vermeer's Mania for Maps
GBH Forum Network
görünümler 51 B