Vermeer, The Concert, 1658–1660 Oil on canvas, 72.5 x 64.7 cm
~One of approximately only 36 known works by Vermeer in the world
~ The subject is the making of music, suspended in time, at the split second just before song is
about to break out. The figures in this work are intently preoccupied with their music: they
do not look at each other and seem unaware that they are being observed.
~This work contains an air of mystery as well—i.e., who are these people and what are their
relationships? Vermeer crafts rather deliberately a sense of mystery in this work. The
reflections of light in the painting also intensify its mystery
~This work was Gardner’s first major acquisition, purchased with the help of experts at a
Paris auction sale. Gardner placed it on a table alongside the window, a location where she often placed her most prized paintings, with a chair in front of it to invite viewing.
Theft of Thirteen Artworks ▪ March 18, 1990
On the night of March 18, 1990, a pair of thieves disguised as Boston police officers entered the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and roamed its galleries, stealing from it thirteen priceless works of art. The stolen artworks include Rembrandt’s Storm on the Sea of Galilee, the artist’s only known seascape, and Jan Vermeer’s The Concert, one of only 36 known Vermeers in the world. The Gardner Museum is offering a $5 million reward for information leading to the recovery of these stolen artworks in good condition. Anyone with information—about the theft, the location of these artworks, or the investigation—is encouraged to contact the Museum’s Director of Security Anthony Amore directly at 617-278-5114 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The Museum can ensure complete confidentiality.
Or Contact the FBI
Information provided by THE ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSUEM