Wednesday, November 26, 2008
the real painter of light
I just watched a fascinating documentary-- called "Stolen"--about the theft of 13 paintings and sculptures from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. (The whole film appears to be available on YouTube.) It details the search for these works of art but also offers some very nice commentary on some of the paintings, including several by Vermeer. I had forgotten how much I loved Vermeer in college. He was a huge favorite of mine until I went to Hong Kong and turned into a Chinese and Japanese art fanatic for a while. One of the paintings taken by the thieves in 1990 was "The Concert", which appears above. I am always drawn in by the way his paintings glow, even after 350 years. Contrast this with Thomas Kinkade, the purported "painter of light," known for his renderings of magical cottages backed by purply sunsets, etc. He is also known for sexual harrassment, public urination, and questionable business practices. Oh, and his newest line of NASCAR-themed paintings!