The Painted Room

In my grandparents’ former home, there was a sitting room at the back of the house where I used to love to spend time. It was filled with all kinds of houseplants, books and magazines. On a large wooden cabinet sat an old radio and on the walls were paintings of all sorts of places, including several paintings of interiors. The one I most remember was a painting of a dark cottage with stucco walls, looking out onto a pathway. There was a feeling of warmth to the painting but also melancholy and I would often gaze at it, wondering about the artist (whose signature I never could decipher) and where this cottage may have been.

Interior spaces have always fascinated me: the lines, the light and shadows, the textures and the colours.Over the centuries, artists have portrayed rooms and chambers with their brush strokes, capturing the momentary moods and atmospheres into timeless renderings. Some of the rooms hold figures, others do not. But there is always the urge in me to explore these spaces, to step inside and peek at what lies beyond the borders of the canvases.


Five Painted Rooms by:

1.       Adolph von Menzel

2.       Raphael Durancamps

3.       Drew Simpson

4.       Wilhelm Hammershoi

5.       Peter Wilhelm Ilstead


Andrew Ritchie is the creator of Martha Moments, a blog devoted Martha-Stewart related content and her community of supporters. He lives and works in Toronto, Canada, and has been a longtime friend of Brent & Josh, Beekman 1802 and Sharon Springs. Each week he’ll scour the world (wide web) to find the 5 most beautiful things to inspire you. Follow Andrew on Pinterest.


by Andrew

Reader Comments

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Susan Barnett

I love these paintings. My favorite is the one by Durancamps. I want that room — and to see what’s outside the window. I also like the last picture by Peter Ilstead — it sort of reminds me of a Vermeer, who is one of my favorite artists. Good choices! By the way, what happened to that painting at your grandparents’ house?

Andrew Ritchie

Hi Susan! Durancamps was a genius. The painting now resides with my Uncle Geoff in his guest bedroom. I still like to have a peek at it when I’m there. I should take a photo next time.

Jennifer Nieves

These paintings just make me daydream. Thanks for sharing them. I now want to find more of these artists work.