Reference Vermeer, Woman in Blue Reading a Letter, c. 1662-64. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Fra Angelico, Annunciation, Museo Diocesano, Cortona. 1976 working title: "The Annunciation." A 35 mm slide and a black-and-white print of this painting in progress both titled "The Annunciation" are in the Estate of George Deem photoarchive.
| Artist's Notes
The painting I am sending for the group show in December is called Miracle....The angel visiting Vermeer's lady reading a letter is Fra Angelico's, from his painting of The Annunciation in Cortona. One of the pleasures of living in Cortona was the pleasure of living with this painting by Fra Angelico. It is really something more than a painting; it's a religious act, an expression of devotion. In the painting Fra Angelico communicates something beyond just esthetic values -- in fact, it is one of those miraculous works of art that transcend art, like Chartres Cathedral. Hence my title for my picture, in which I introduce the supernatural into Vermeer's naturalistic space and light. This painting took me two years to complete. Working on the painting I learned something about angels: they exist only for as long as the situation that calls them into being. They are pure spirit, and as spirits they do not exist in time and space. So it is not a question how many angels can dance on the head of a pin....This will be the first exhibition of the picture. (George Deem,letterto Pat Sneed, November 13, 1977)
The angel in Miracle is Fra Angelico's, from his Annunciation in Cortona. This picture was not shown in the Allan Stone (Gallery) show this month. It is part of a group show at Sneed-Hillman Gallery, Rocford, Illinois. In December. (George Deem, letter to Udo Kultermann, November 26, 1977)