The Geographer - Jan Vermeer

The Geographer

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The Geographer and the Astronomer which is another of Vermeer's paintings from this period of his life are a departure from his usual style. Gone is the interplay of light and shade and how it reacts to the fabric and other items it falls upon, instead we see a richness of colour and detail. The light is falling onto rich blues and reds in the sitters garments. it shows the colours on the oriental carpet.
The sitter is surrounded by the tools of his trade there is a globe on the top of the dresser at the back of the sitter, there is a map on the wall though this picture shows less of it than is actually painted in the original work. He has dividers in his hand almost as though he is telling the viewer that he is working out a distance from one place to another. The date on the wall at the back of the painting is believed to be added at a later date by many scholars.

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