The Easel

Nicolaes Maes: Dutch Master of the Golden Age

Maes had Rembrandt for a teacher and Vermeer as a contemporary. How could he not be overshadowed? Still, he had accomplishments. Maes innovated in genre painting, deftly inserting a narrative into images of middle-class domesticity. And then he moved on, to (more lucrative) portraits. Not Vermeer, who saw untapped potential in what Maes had been doing. The rest, as they say, is history.