On Vermeer’s “Milkmaid” — Het melkmeisje
Rijks Museum, Amsterdam • 1995
If, from all the paintings in all the world’s museums, I could own one masterpiece it would not be the Mona Lisa, that I admire, or even Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus,” or van Gogh’s Bedroom, which I love, it would be Vermeer’s “The Milkmaid” — Het melkmeisje.
If I could have one painting to look at when I woke up in the morning and when I went to bed at night— a painting into which could impute the power to inspire within me the capacity to see the inexhaustible beauty in the things that are, it would be this study of a servant girl pouring milk to make bread pudding in the elegant light of a kitchen window.
As I was experiencing that rare pleasure at the Rijks Museum in A’dam, this person with amazing hair slid between us.
“The most startling image in painting, to me,
is that milk pouring out of the pitcher.
Why is that so. I don’t know.”
~ W. S. Merwin
Academy of Achievement, Presentation • 7.3.08
Early Anti-Viet Nam Protest • 1965
Louis Lomax — Journalist (1922 - 1970)
Long Beach State, LB, California