Dinner with Vermeer

Volume 7, Issue 23; 31 Mar 2004; last modified 08 Oct 2010

On Friday and Saturday evening, Amherst Writers & Artists Press presented a theatrical fundraiser: dinner accompanied by a series of tableaux vivants of Vermeer paintings. [Update: there are now 35 known Vermeer paintings.]

Life is painting a picture, not doing a sum.

Oliver Wendell Holmes

On Friday and Saturday evening, Amherst Writers & Artists Press presented a theatrical fundraiser: dinner accompanied by a series of tableaux vivants of Johannes Vermeer paintings.

They were generous enough to allow photographs, sans flash. Several came out passably well. The obligatory “Girl with a Pearl Earring” did not, alas.

Tableau Vivant: The Geographer
Tableau Vivant: The Geographer
The Geographer
The Geographer

As you can see, my angle of view was often not the same as the painter’s.

Tableau Vivant: A Woman Holding a Balance
Tableau Vivant: A Woman Holding a Balance
A Woman Holding a Balance
A Woman Holding a Balance
Tableau Vivant: A Lady Writing a Letter
Tableau Vivant: A Lady Writing a Letter
A Lady Writing a Letter
A Lady Writing a Letter
Tableau Vivant: Officer and a Laughing Girl
Tableau Vivant: Officer and a Laughing Girl
Officer and a Laughing Girl
Officer and a Laughing Girl

The inspiration for the event was the black and white tile floor at the Amherst College Alumni House which greatly resembles the floor in “The Concert”.

The Concert
The Concert

My photo of that tableau vivant didn’t come out. The original, in case you didn’t know, is missing, it was stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.

It was a great venue and a wonderful evening!

The actual Vermeer images in this essay come from Roy Williams Clickery’s excellent Paintings of Vermeer site.

Update 31 Mar 2004: I learned by way of Paul Sumner Downey that a 35th painting has been confirmed as a Vermeer. (I learned of Paul’s post by way of Technorati which noticed his pointer to this essay.)

Comments

Thanks so much for sharing these. It was such a wonderful night. I wonder if anyone has photos of the meal itself. I have lost my photos, but they were not very good.

—Posted by Annaliese Bischoff on 05 Mar 2011 @ 02:38 UTC #