The spread of fashion to allegories and hidden meanings also affected painting. The artist created two paintings that complement each other. This is an "allegory of faith and an allegory of painting." To comprehend the idea of the master, it should be remembered that in that era great importance was attached to symbols and only the initiates understood this secret language.
Masters of the Dutch school created canvases where in objects and details one could see a second, or even a third meaning.
At first glance, this is the usual setting of an artist’s workshop. However, if you look closely at the girl, which is located at the window, then the deliberate purity of her posture is noticeable. The main task of the model is not to pose, but to demonstrate objects - symbols.
Trumpet and laurel wreath mean glory and victory, a volume of history indicates the source of inspiration of the artist. The curtain and mask are theatrical attributes. You can interpret them as an indication of the staged plot of the picture. It can be considered as a reminder that all people hide their real face behind a mask and play their chosen role all their lives. The girl herself is seen as a muse.
The artist himself does not show his face, he is all absorbed in work. Tension shines through in every gesture and wave of the brush. He is trying to catch a moment. Stop it on the canvas. For some details of the clothes, we can assume that we have a self-portrait of Vermeer.
The canvas was written in a single impulse and was not subjected to subsequent alteration. The master thought it out to the smallest detail in advance.
The painting was dear to the artist and remained with him even in difficult times.
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