Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/11/29

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Vermeer's Camear [was: Critical discourse on photography]
From: "J. Gilbert Plantinga" <>
Date: Thu, 29 Nov 2001 11:57:27 -0500

And in today's New York Times:

(you do have to log in & create a password - they've never sent me any spam)


on 11/29/01 11:48 AM, Guy Bennett at wrote:

>> There was a great BBC programme with Hockney on this - very very interesting
>> (great stuff like famous paintings, that when you look closely, have depth
>> of field/out of focus problems! And suddenly, at the time when certain
>> optical devices become available, everyone in a lot of paintings becomes
>> left handed... even a monkey in one picture!
>> I flicked through Hockneys book of the programme - very interesting too.
>> [snip]
>> I imagine it will come to PBS or something like that sometime. There was a
>> good article in the Radio Times, and one in the New Yorker by Hockney a year
>> or so ago.
>> Tim A
> On this issue, read Philip Steadman's "Vermeer's Camera" (Oxford, 2001),
> reviewed here on the Lug last spring when the book came out. Steadman
> studies the same problem as Hockney, but he did it first, if I recall. His
> book is also the most thorough exploration of the potential use of a camera
> obscura by Vermeer, something that has been debated forever, but has yet to
> be proven. Steadman can't prove it either, but he gives some very
> compelling evidence that Vermeer did indeed use some form of camera to
> compose and paint his pictures. A good read.
> Guy

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