This is the most famous cityscape of the Dutch Golden Age. The interplay of light and shade, the impressive cloudy sky and the subtle reflections in the water make this painting an absolute masterpiece.
We are looking at Delft from the south. There is hardly a breath of wind and the city has an air of tranquillity. Vermeer reflected this tranquillity in his composition, by making three horizontal strips: water, city and sky. He also painted the buildings a bit neater than they actually were.