View of Delft

Not to be confused with A View of Delft.
View of Delft
Dutch: Gezicht op Delft
Artist Johannes Vermeer
Year 1660–1661
Medium Oil on canvas
Dimensions 96.5 cm × 115.7 cm (38.0 in × 45.6 in)
Location Mauritshuis, The Hague

View of Delft (Dutch: Gezicht op Delft) is an oil painting by Johannes Vermeer, painted ca. 1660–1661. The painting of the Dutch artist's hometown is among his most popular,[1] painted at a time when cityscapes were uncommon. It is one of three known paintings of Delft by Vermeer, along with The Little Street and the lost painting House Standing in Delft.[2] The use of pointillism in the work suggests that it postdates The Little Street.

Painting materials

The technical analysis[3] shows that Vermeer used a limited choice of pigments for this painting: lead white, yellow ochre, natural ultramarine and madder lake are the main painting materials.[4] His painting technique on the other hand is very elaborate and meticulous.[5]


In 2011, the painting was featured on gold and silver commemorative coins issued by the Royal Dutch Mint.[6] The painting also features in Marcel Proust's novel In Search of Lost Time. Proust himself greatly admired Vermeer, particularly a View of Delft. When seeing the work for the first time, Proust is quoted as saying:

"Ever since I saw the View of Delft in the museum in The Hague, I have known that I had seen the most beautiful painting in the world".[7]


  1. Slatkes, Leonard J. (16 July 1981). Vermeer and his contemporaries. Abbeville Press. p. 40. ISBN 978-0-89659-195-0. Retrieved 18 June 2010.
  2. Montias, John Michael (1 January 1991). Vermeer and His Milieu: A Web of Social History. Princeton University Press. p. 200. ISBN 978-0-691-00289-7. Retrieved 18 June 2010.
  3. Kuhn, H. A Study of the Pigments and Grounds used by Jan Vermeer. Reports and Studies in the History of Art, 1968, 154–202
  4. Johannes Vermeer, 'View of Delft', ColourLex
  5. Arthur K. Wheelock Jr. and C. J. Kaldenbach, Vermeer’s View of Delft” and His Vision of Reality, Artibus et Historiae, Vol. 3, No. 6 (1982), pp. 9–35
  6. "New Coins Pay Homage to Dutch Artwork and the Old Dutch Masters". Coin Update. 15 April 2011.
  7. Townsend, Gabrielle (2008-01-01). Proust's Imaginary Museum. Peter Lang. ISBN 9783039111244.

Further reading

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