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Animating Vision: Visual Adaptation in Girl with a Pearl Earring

Animating Vision: Visual Adaptation in Girl with a Pearl Earring ilan safit AnimatingVision Visual Adaptation in GirlwithaPearlEarring Representing fictional events in and around Johannes Vermeer’s studio, the 2003 film Girl with a Pearl Earring, directed by Peter Webber, demonstrates the capaci- ties of cinema for fusing temporal narrative with spatial representation. An adap- tation of a popular novel of the same title, the film adapts both narrative’s devices of structuring meaning and painting’s devices of visual representation. In the film, genre painting’s tendency to depict pictures-within-pictures receives special cur- rency enabled by the plot’s focus on the production of pictures. The film’s penulti- mate scene demonstrates the intersection of narrative and visual representation in a way that underscores film’s debt to its mother arts. Yet the act of cinematic adap- tation also uncovers the potentials that lie dormant in representational painting and reveals the latter as an anticipation of the cinema. The scene takes place after the plot’s dramatic events have reached their end. Griet, the adolescent daughter of a Delft tile painter who lost his eyesight, and thus his livelihood, in an accident, is taken up as a maid in Vermeer’s busy house- hold. Navigating between the demanding supervision of the family cook, the ani- mosity of Vermeer’s http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Comparatist University of North Carolina Press

Animating Vision: Visual Adaptation in Girl with a Pearl Earring

The Comparatist , Volume 30 – Apr 26, 2006

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 the Southern Comparative Literature Association.
ISSN
1559-0887

Abstract

ilan safit AnimatingVision Visual Adaptation in GirlwithaPearlEarring Representing fictional events in and around Johannes Vermeer’s studio, the 2003 film Girl with a Pearl Earring, directed by Peter Webber, demonstrates the capaci- ties of cinema for fusing temporal narrative with spatial representation. An adap- tation of a popular novel of the same title, the film adapts both narrative’s devices of structuring meaning and painting’s devices of visual representation. In the film, genre painting’s tendency to depict pictures-within-pictures receives special cur- rency enabled by the plot’s focus on the production of pictures. The film’s penulti- mate scene demonstrates the intersection of narrative and visual representation in a way that underscores film’s debt to its mother arts. Yet the act of cinematic adap- tation also uncovers the potentials that lie dormant in representational painting and reveals the latter as an anticipation of the cinema. The scene takes place after the plot’s dramatic events have reached their end. Griet, the adolescent daughter of a Delft tile painter who lost his eyesight, and thus his livelihood, in an accident, is taken up as a maid in Vermeer’s busy house- hold. Navigating between the demanding supervision of the family cook, the ani- mosity of Vermeer’s

Journal

The ComparatistUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Apr 26, 2006

There are no references for this article.