Woman in an Interior

Vilhelm Hammershøi (Danish, 1864–1916)


57.1 x 62.2 cm (22 1/2 x 24 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Oil on canvas

Not On View





In a modest interior lit by a central window, a woman sits absorbed in her work or reading. The painting’s clean lines and quietist atmosphere suggest Hammershøi’s admiration for Johannes Vermeer, 17th-century Dutch master of serene domestic scenes. Hammershøi produced 60 paintings of the apartment on the Strandgade in Christianshavn, Denmark where he lived with his wife (the model for this picture) from 1900 to 1909.


1918, Eduard Rée, Copenhagen; October 16, 1918, Rée estate sale, Vagn Aagesen, Copenhagen, lot 22. 1924, Max Lester, Copenhagen; October 20, 1924, Lester sale, Winkel & Magnussen, Copenhagen, lot 21. March 20, 1961, anonymous sale, Arne Bruun Rasmussen, Copenhagen, lot 26. About 1960s, acquired by a private collector; about 1984/1985, sold by this private collector to Green Square, Copenhagen [see note 1]; June, 1985, sold by Green Square to John Goelet, New York; 1985, year-end gift of John Goelet to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 22, 1986)

[1] According to information kindly provided by Green Square (November 6, 2006).

Credit Line

Gift of John Goelet in memory of Hanns Swarzenski