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Basket of Flowers
Arellano, Juan de
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Arellano, Juan de

Santorcaz, Madrid, 1614 - Madrid, 1676

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Basket of Flowers

Ca. 1670. Oil on canvas Room 018

Throughout his career, Juan de Arellano executed flower pieces of a horizontal format that represent bouquets in open weave wicker baskets. During the last decade of his career, he painted a number of these works on a large scale that constitute the apogee of his flower pieces of this type. The basket motif also appears in a number of other flower paintings from the period, such as Antonio Ponce´s The Month of May (Private Collection), a picture which may be indebted to a prototype by Juan van der Hamen. In this picture, the flowers in the basket are depicted in a looser, more unruly manner than the formally arranged bouquet in a vase. Indeed, the iconography of the basket of flowers may differ from other forms of presentation in that these are to be imagined as recently gathered from a garden, as they have been in Tomas Hiepes´s painting of a Girl Making Posies in a Garden (Private Collection). In the works of both Arellano and Ponce their freshness is evoked by their heaving, undulating vitality, that is such as to have pushed out a number of the blooms from the basket. The butterflies that have been attracted to the arrangement in Arellano´s painting also serve to underline the vernal beauty of the flowers.

Despite the apparently natural appearance of the flowers, their arrangement conforms to Arellano´s habitual compositional practice, in terms of the disposition of the blooms and their chromatic harmony. The painter from Santorcaz has, if anything, increased the illusionistic three-dimensionality of the arrangement in this late work. He has carefully articulated the perspective of the flowers, turning these into pictorial depth towards the extremities of the composition and reinforcing the illusion of volume in the composition by dramatically counterpointing the strongly lit flowers at the left of the basket against the dark background, while silhouetting those at the right-hand side of the basket against a luminous ground. In fact, Arellano´s style changed little during the last twenty years of his career. However, the flowers in this painting are the product of many years of experience in this field and are modelled with considerable fluency and freshness of touch. The Spanish painter´s confident, rhythmic brushwork is responsible for endowing the blooms, leaves and stems with the sense of dynamic, pulsating life that was always one of the most compelling qualities of his art. Although the insects present in the picture might remind the viewer of the Flemish flower pieces that Arellano had emulated as a young artist, these are relatively broadly painted and his work shows little of the microscopic detail for which Northern specialists were so admired. Arellano´s flower piece rather exudes a decorative splendour that is one of his abiding artistic qualities. It is likely that this painting had a pendant pair or formed a part of an even larger ensemble of paintings and would have produced a spectacular impression as decoration in the richly appointed interior of a 17th century collector (Text drawn from Cherry, P.: Spanish Flower Painting in the Golden Age, Museo Nacional del Prado, 2002, p. 104).

Technical data

Related artworks

Basket of Flowers
Oil on canvas, 1668 - 1670
Inventory number
P003139
Author
Arellano, Juan de
Title
Basket of Flowers
Date
Ca. 1670
Technique
Oil
Support
Canvas
Dimension
Height: 84.9 cm.; Width: 105.1 cm.
Provenance
Bequest of Ángeles Sáinz de la Cuesta, Widow Countess of Los Moriles, 1969

Bibliography +

Museo Nacional del Prado, Museo del Prado: catálogo de las pinturas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1972.

Salas, Xavier de, Adquisiciones del Museo del Prado. I. Pintores españoles, Goya: Revista de arte, 132, 1976, pp. 349-351.

Salas, Xavier de, Museo del Prado: adquisiciones de 1969 a 1977, Patronato Nacional de Museos, Madrid, 1978, pp. 9.

Pintura española de bodegones y floreros de 1600 a Goya /, Ministerio de Cultura, Dirección General de Bellas, Madrid, 1983, pp. 121, nº88.

Museo Nacional del Prado, Museo del Prado: catálogo de las pinturas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1985, pp. 22.

Carreño, Rizi, Herrera y la pintura madrileña de su tiempo :, Ministerio de Cultura: Banco Herrero, Madrid, 1986, pp. 285, nº122.

Gutiérrez Alonso, Luis Carlos, Semiología del lenguaje floral en la pintura barroca madrileña (Comentarios a una exposición), Boletín del Museo del Prado, VII, 1986, pp. 93-99.

Pinette, Matthieu, De Bellini à Bonnard chefs-d'uvre de la peinture du Musée du Prado., Le Temps apprivoisé, 1992.

Museo Nacional del Prado, La belleza de lo real: floreros y bodegones españoles en el, COLECCIONES DEL MUSEO DEL PRADO, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1995, pp. 99.

Museo Nacional del Prado, Museo del Prado. Inventario general de pinturas. Nuevas Adquisiciones. Museo Iconográfico. Tapices., Museo del Prado, Espasa Calpe, Madrid, 1996, pp. nº1906.

Juan de Arellano, (1614-1676): últimos floreros, Museo de Bellas Artes = Bilboko Arte Eder Museoa, Bilbao, 1997, pp. 38-39, nº2.

Arte y saber: la cultura en tiempos de Felipe III y Felipe I, Ministerio de Educación y Cultura, Madrid, 1999, pp. 336, nº41.

Ebert-Schifferer, Sybille, Natures Mortes, Citadelles & Mazenod, Paris, 1999, pp. 201, nº145.

El bodegón, Galaxia GutenbergCírculo de Lectores, Madrid, 2000, pp. lám. 37.

Flores españolas del Siglo de Oro: la pintura de flores en la España del siglo XVII, Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado, Madrid, 2002, pp. 136, nº32.

In the presence of things. Four centuries of European still life., Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, 2010, pp. 224-225.

El Prado en el Hermitage, Museo Estatal del Hermitage: Museo del Prado, 2011, pp. 150-151.

Naturalezas muertas en la España del Siglo de Oro, Nagasaki Prefectural Art Museum, 2015, pp. 40-42 n.7.

Other inventories +

Inv. Nuevas Adquisiciones (iniciado en 1856). Núm. 1906.
Autor: Arellano / 1906. Asunto: Florero. / Lienzo: 0,84 x 1,05 / Nº del catálogo: 3139 / de la misma procedencia que el anterior

Catálogo Museo del Prado, 1972. Núm. 3139.

Exhibitions +

Los bodegones del Siglo de Oro español. Obras Maestras del Museo del Prado
Nagasaki
23.04.2015 - 26.07.2015

El Prado en el Hermitage
San Petersburgo
25.02.2011 - 29.05.2011

The Object Observed. Five Centuries of European Still-Life
Lisboa
11.02.2010 - 02.05.2010

Flores españolas del Siglo de Oro / Spanich Flower Painting in the Golden Age
Madrid
15.11.2002 - 02.02.2003

La cultura española de Cervantes a Velazquez, 1598-1648
Valladolid
10.03.1999 - 30.07.1999

Juan de Arellano
Madrid
01.04.1998 - 01.06.1998

Juan de Arellano
Bilbao
10.10.1997 - 14.12.1997

Location +

Room 018 (On Display)

Expuesto
Update date: 17-10-2019 | Registry created on 28-04-2015

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