If you couldn’t get to the Vermeer exhibition

If you couldn’t get to the Fitzwilliam Museum’s astonishing small exhibition
‘Vermeer’s Women: Secrets and Silence’ (or you went once the word got around, and it all became rather uncomfortably packed), then this is just to say that the book-of-the-exhibition is unusually good. It is beautifully produced, as so often with such catalogues, the introductory essays are genuinely illuminating (and reproduce many more pictures than were being shown in Cambridge), and it is pretty inexpensive as these things go. It was a great pleasure to see the real paintings, of course — especially on our first visit, before the crowds discovered the exhibition. But quietly reading and re-reading this book is also wonderful. Warmly recommended. The first, long, customer review on Amazon.com is spot on.

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