National Geographic : 1971 Jun
"One paints with the heart," said Jean-Baptiste Chardin, the Parisian noted for domestic scenes such as "The Grace," first exhibited in 1740. In con trast to the opulent allegories of court artists, he portrayed the interests of the middle class family, religion, good manners, and good food. His emphasis on the commonplace recalls Dutch masters, such as Metsu (right). Chardin's brushwork is so subtle, the author notes, that some believe he applied the pigment with his thumbs. Spirited city life of the 17th century Dutch unfolds in the paintings of Gabriel Metsu. His "Vegetable Market at Amster dam" portrays a wide range of subjects-a farmwoman with her wares, a modest housewife, and a fawning dandy. Metsu and his fellow painters catered to new patrons, the bourgeois, whose less-than-palatial houses demanded smaller canvases. Thus the artists earned the title the "little Dutch masters." 824 HENRYBEVILLE(C) N.G.S.