Johannes Vermeer (Dutch, 1632–1675). Woman with a Lute, ca. 1662–63. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Bequest of Collis P. Huntington, 1900 (25.110.24) | In this work of the early 1660s, a young woman in an ermine-trimmed jacket plays a lute and looks intently out the window. The viola da gamba on the floor and songbooks on the table suggest that she may be waiting for a male visitor.
Raphaelle Peale (1774–1825). Still Life with Cake, 1818. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Maria DeWitt Jesup Fund, 1959 (59.166) | Peale's tightly grouped still lifes are often permeated with a delicate melancholy akin to that which characterized the life of the artist; he was an alcoholic who suffered the effects of arsenic and mercury poisoning caused by his work as a taxidermist in his father's museu