Gregor J M Weber, Pieter Roelofs, Taco Dibbits

Published to accompany the once-in-a-lifetime exhibition at the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, this is the first major study of Vermeer’s life and work in many years.

New York Times Best Art Book of 2023

Johannes Vermeer's intensely quiet and enigmatic paintings invite the viewer into a private world, often prompting more questions than answers. Who is being portrayed? Are his subjects real or imagined? And how did he create such an unrivaled sense of intimacy?

Bringing together diverse strands of the Dutch master's professional and private worlds, this is the first major authoritative study of Vermeer's life and work for many years shedding light on all thirty-seven of his paintings.

Vermeer was designed by Irma Boom, the “Queen of Books,” and printed on an uncoated “Munken Print White” paper, specially commissioned to ensure the veracity of colors. Irma Boom says: “the matte paper brings you closer to Vermeer; there is no gloss or glare in between, just like with the real works.” With a wide selection of contextual illustrations, commentaries, and up-to-date research by distinguished international Vermeer scholars, this is the definitive volume on the most admired of all seventeenth-century Dutch masters.


With contributions by

Bart Cornelis, National Gallery, London

Bente Frissen, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Sabine Pénot, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

Pieter Roelofs, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Friederike Schuett, Staedel Museum, Frankfurt am Main

Christian Tico Seifert, National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh

Ariane van Suchtelen, Mauritshuis, The Hague

Gregor J.M. Weber, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Marjorie E. Wieseman, National Gallery of Art, Washington


Comprehensive… Vermeer scholars…give insight into his life and influences while analyzing the paintings and their compositions in great detail… A feast for the yes as well as the mind… Worthy of any art history collection.

— Sandy Knowles Library Journal

One of the Best Art Books of 2023. With its many pages of hyper-zoomed close-ups, this dense and snoopy catalog gets you obscenely close to the real thing… The choice of matte rather than standard glossy pages (a matter of some controversy) respects the painter’s soft lighting. This is armchair museum-going at its finest.

— Walker Mimms The New York Times


Gregor J M Weber

Edited By

The authors all work at the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Gregor J. M. Weber is head of the department of fine arts.

Pieter Roelofs

Edited By

Pieter Roelofs is head of paintings and sculpture.

Taco Dibbits

Foreword By

Taco Dibbits is general director.