International literature and music festival

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In conversation with Benjamin Moser


Saturday November 4, 2023


14.00 - 15.00




Het Mauritshuis


Emilie Gordenker

Image for Benjamin Moser

Merlijn Doomernik


Benjamin Moser

Twenty years ago, Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Benjamin Moser followed his lover from America and settled in Utrecht. To better understand the Netherlands, he wandered through museums and came face to face with the fascinating painters of the 17th century: the always dynamic Rembrandt, the intimacy of Ter Borch, the mysterious Vermeer.

He encountered questions that these masters also asked: Why do we make art, and why do we need it? Who, and what, is an artist? How can art help us see ourselves, and how can it help us see others?And in a world without religion, can art provide a substitute for God?

The Upside-Down World: Meetings with the Dutch Masters is a dazzling book in which Moser provides an accessible, in-depth, and contemplative look at the lives of the Dutch masters.It is also a fun and learned guide to one of the greatest epochs of human creativity: a book for anyone, whether lifelong scholar or curious tourist.

Moser is originally from Houston and has published critically acclaimed biographies of Clarice Lispector and Susan Sontag, for which he received the 2020 Pulitzer Prize.

De wereld op zijn kop. ontmoetingen met de Hollandse meesters