The Easel

8th June 2021

A Year Lived Inside With Instagram and a Dutch Master

Elegant interiors are hugely popular on Instagram. Vermeer’s tranquil interiors are similar escapisms, as are those of Vermeer’s near equal, Pieter de Hooch. Sadly, they were “inventions” because war and strife were commonplace. De Hooch moved to Amsterdam to exploit his renown, but in the bigger city his works lost “freshness”. Those late pictures are “a shipwreck”. Like Instagram, de Hooch’s main act had been to keep ugliness “carefully at bay”.