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Johannes Vermeer 126 Questioning Traditions2A Life in BalanceIn Woman Holding a Balance, a woman stands quietly, looking down at a perfectly balanced scale. She wears an elegant blue jacket trimmed with white fur, and she stands in front of a table that holds coins, pearls, gold, and other precious objects. A large painting of a reli-gious scene hangs on the wall behind her. This painting presents themes and characteristics found in many paintings by Vermeer. A moment in time: It captures a moment that seems to be frozen in time forever. His works leave us wonder-ing: What might happen next?Looking into a private world: This woman is lost in her own thoughts as she gazes at the balance held in her right hand. Vermeer presents a quiet, intimate scene of a solitary figure. His works make us curious: What might the woman be thinking or feeling? Why is she holding the balance?Sunlight and shadows: Daylight streaming through the window on the left casts a diagonal beam of light across the s...