Artists Magazine asked, “If you could’ve witnessed the creation of one artwork, what would it be?” Twelve artists answered, including Costa Vavagiakis.

One of the reasons The Art of Painting intrigues me is that it’s one of the few Vermeers I haven’t seen in person. We on the East Coast have the opportunity to see and savor thirteen Vermeers (and maybe a fourteenth, if his stolen canvas, The Concert, ever resurfaces in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum). Over the past quarter century, I have traveled to see his other works in Europe but never made the trip to the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna to see this extraordinary painting.

The second and more important reason has to be its theme: the artist in the act of painting his model in his studio. Every artist most surely connects to this narrative; the studio is where the artist finds solace. No more obvious in Vermeer’s case, living and working in his mother-in-law’s house with his wife and eleven children.

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