The color white projects purity, cleanliness, and neutrality. Doctors don white coats, brides traditionally wear white gowns, and a white picket fence surrounds a safe and happy home.
Oil on canvas, 53 x 43 cm. This subject had been previously exploited by other genre painters including one of the most refined compositions by Gerrit ter Borch, a work of utmost delicacy that would have appealed to Vermeer's sensitivity.
In Ter Borch's workcomposition see detail left a young servant attends with a pitcher and basin similar to the ones in Vermeer's work for the final touches of the her toilette. In pictorial and emblematic tradition, the wash basin and pitcher evoke innocence purity and cleanliness.
The washing of hands had Biblical associations with the concept of spiritual cleansing. The idea of cleanliness is reinforced by the young lady's hooftdoek and nightrail as well as the bright light streaming through the window casting its clear blue light on everything it encounters.
Vermeer evidently attached a particular significance to the act of hand washing. In the Amsterdam Dissius sale of in which 21 Vermeer paintings were auctioned, item no. Curiously, no Dutch picture of a man washing his hands has ever been discovered and one cannot help but wonder how Vermeer conceived and executed such a theme especially if we consider that the man was not alone but "with figures.
Private collection A contemporary visitor to the Netherlands once noted that the Dutch prized three things above all else: From Pieter Brueghel onward, Netherlandish painters portrayed children more than any of the European nation.
Anyone familiar with Dutch painting is aware of the empathetic treatment reserved for children by Jan Steen, who has studied the relations of children with grown-ups with great insight and charm, and, closer to Vermeer, Pieter de Hooch, who explored the theme of maternity with evident participation.
Many Vermeer enthusiasts wonder why Vermeer never included his own children in his interiors, if his works are truly "slices of daily life.
A meticulous inventory of household goods taken after Vermeer's death describes a different picture of the Vermeer household full of cribs and worn furnishings. The simplest explanation for the lack of children in Vermeer's art is that his paintings were never intended to be snapshots of an extant reality.
As Vermeer expert Walter Liedtke writes, "In a broad view, the essential subject of Vermeer's mature work is an ideal woman in an ideal home. The image, of the intended male viewer, was an icon of private life and personal feeling, concerns that flourished in a time of postwar prosperity and peace.
The scenes that Vermeer depicted were carefully composed in his studio on the top floor of his well-to-do mother-in-law's house, away from the bustle of his oversized family. The true appearance of Vermeer's down-stairs household must have been much more similar to a painting by Cornelis de Man see above.
The Kremer Collection, Fondation Aetas Aure Historians have ruled out the possibility that the young woman is watering plants outside the half-opened window.
The elegant gilt pitcher, instead would have been employed at the end of the young girl's morning toilette to wash her hands. Caspar Netscher depicted an analogous scene of hand-washing when he was still working in the studio of Gerrit ter Borch see left.
While the Romans and Greeks associated well-washed hands with clean bodies, in the medieval and Renaissance times there was little interest in washing beyond the wrist.
Monastery cloisters featured a stone trough for hand-washing, and medieval paintings of interiors often show a ewer, a basin and a cloth for drying hands in a corner of the room.Religious Symbolism In “Rime Of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” written in , has been widely discussed throughout literary history.
Although critics have come up with many different interpretations of this poem, one idea that has remained prevalent throughout these discussions is the apparent. Numerology: Number Meanings & Symbolism. To understand how our Spirit, Totem, & Power Animals tie into Numerology we have start with the number meanings and symbolism in general.
Ao 鳌 áo Lotus Culture The lotus is an emblem with strong Buddhist links. As the plant grows in mud and muck and yet produces a pure white flower it is considered a metaphor for favorable transformation.
MUDRAS & HAND SYMBOLISM--THE POWER OF MUDRAS PART 3: HAND SYMBOLISM & BELIEFS. Human hands have never lost their fascination to our ancient forefathers, and even now in contemporary times, the novel roles that hands play in the humanities with their dexterity and grace never cease to amaze us.
A man who had been soaked in water, and smothered in mud, and lamed by stones, and cut by flints, and stung by nettles, and torn by briars; who limped, and shivered, and glared and growled; and whose teeth chattered in his head as he seized me by the chin. In Christianity, a white lily represents the Madonna.
On Yom Kippur the Grand Rabbi dresses in white to restore an amiicable relationship between God and his people. In the Bible, white represents the color of light and is an emblem of the divine. According to Pantone Inc., white is the best selling.