When Jan Vermeer’s masterpiece “Young Woman Seated at a Virginal” sold at auction in 2004, it fetched $30 million, a record for the artist and a remarkable achievement for the Dutch Baroque painter who left his wife and 10 children destitute when he died 335 years ago.
Part of Vermeer’s holdup in turning out work seems to be that he was extremely methodical. Rembrandt, by comparison, produced some 300 painting and another 300 prints.
According to author Sandra Forty, “(Vermeer) seems rarely to have sold a painting, although when he did it apparently paid well: one is known to have sold for 600 guilders, although fashionable Amsterdam painters could command much higher prices for their work.”
And you thought living in a college town had some disadvantages.
A British paper is reporting that exclusive South African suburbs around Cape Town are being plagued by drunken baboons.
The invading baboons have developed a taste for grapes used by wine makers, according to The Telegraph. “Each day, dozens of Cape Baboons gather to strip the ancient vines – the sauvignon blanc grapes are a particular favourite – before heading into the mountains to sleep. A few, who sample fallen fruit that has fermented in the sun, pass out and don’t make it home.”
While it all sounds quite entertaining – there’s nothing like a band of plastered primates for laughs – apparently it’s not all fun and games for those who have to put up with the bamboozled baboons.