A Woman Seated at a Window

Gabriël Metsu Dutch

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 542

A housewife holds an apple, which in this context more likely refers to the New Eve (the Virgin Mary) than the old one. The birdcage and hearth imply happy domesticity, while the grapevine alludes to the woman as "a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house" (Psalm 128). The original buyer of such a painting, if he had opinions about art as well as women, would probably have described it as a nisstuck, meaning "niche-piece" or "window-niche," an illusionistic format popularized by Gerrit Dou.

A Woman Seated at a Window, Gabriël Metsu (Dutch, Leiden 1629–1667 Amsterdam), Oil on wood

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.