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Plate with Plums and Morello Cherries
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1631
Hamen y León, Juan Van Der
Plate with Plums and Morello Cherries
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1631
Hamen y León, Juan Van Der

Juan van der Hamen y León´s output alternates between compositionally complex still lifes and works that are smaller in size and constructed more simply, such as this canvas. It depicts a pewter, possibly silver, plate holding a small pile of plums (or sloes), and cherries. As is habitual in this type of work, the plate is placed in the close foreground, sitting on the edge of a stone ledge

A Venetian General
Oil on canvas. 1570 - 1575
Tintoretto, Jacopo Robusti
A Venetian General
Oil on canvas. 1570 - 1575
Tintoretto, Jacopo Robusti

A portrait of a Venetian soldier wearing armor. He holds a baton in his right hand and his weapons in his left. Turned, he extends his arm toward the viewer, thus opening a third dimension in this composition strengthened by the force of his gaze. It has not been possible to confirm the identity of the sitter, but we must point out the similarity of this work's general composition to that of the p

Smokers and Drinkers
Oil on panel. 1652
Teniers The Younger, David
Smokers and Drinkers
Oil on panel. 1652
Teniers The Younger, David

Three figures enjoy tobacco in an expressive manner in the foreground while an onlooker leans through the window. Around a table in the background, another group of figures drinks or plays cards. This is an example of scenes inside taverns with smokers, drinkers and players, which Teniers made during the sixteen thirties. He began with figures by his teacher, Adriaen Brouwer (1605/1606-1638), whic

The Martyrdom of Saint Menas
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1580
Veronese, Paolo (Paolo Cagliari)
The Martyrdom of Saint Menas
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1580
Veronese, Paolo (Paolo Cagliari)

Saint Mena extends his arms and raises his gaze to Heaven, refusing to worship the graven idol presented to him at the left of the composition. As a result, he was martyred and decapitated. His suffering occurred in the year 296, under the rule of Diocletian. It is indicated here by the sword held by the person who has seized the saint, and by the pliers in the basket, which were used to pull out

Danaë and the Shower of Gold
Oil on canvas. 1560 - 1565
Titian (Tiziano Vecellio)
Danaë and the Shower of Gold
Oil on canvas. 1560 - 1565
Titian (Tiziano Vecellio)

The first Poesie presented to Prince Philip were Danaë (1553, The Wellington Collection) and Venus and Adonis (1554, Museo del Prado, P422), versions of other previous works, but endowed with all the prestige of the commissioning party. In turn, these works became models for numerous replicas (Danaë receiving the Golden Rain, 1560-65, Museo del Prado, P425).Danaë depicts the moment

Portrait of a Gentleman
Oil on canvas. 1600 - 1605
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)
Portrait of a Gentleman
Oil on canvas. 1600 - 1605
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)

A portrait of an unidentified gentleman dressed in black with a white ruff. His expressive gaze and the loose and confident brushstrokes denote the high quality of this work, which is very similar to other portraits painted by El Greco at the beginning of the sixteenth century, like the so-called Aged Gentleman (P00806). There are various hypotheses about the identity of the sitter. Some authors b

Landscape with Psyche and Jupiter
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1610
Rubens, Peter Paul; Bril, Paul
Landscape with Psyche and Jupiter
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1610
Rubens, Peter Paul; Bril, Paul

On a number of occasions, Peter Paul Rubens partially overpainted finished pictures. He did this to paintings by his own hand, such as Nymphs and Satyrs (P1666), which he retouched and enlarged twenty years after he first painted it. He also made changes to drawings and paintings by other artists that he owned. This painting is an example of such reworking, albeit in a radical mode that changed th

Country Celebration
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1650
Teniers The Younger, David
Country Celebration
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1650
Teniers The Younger, David

Peasants or villagers hold a feast in front of a tavern or inn, recognizable by its red flag. They drink, eat and dance to the music of a bagpiper standing on a barrel. On the left, various distinguished personages, who stand out because of their different clothing, look on with a combination of curiosity and indifference. A large church in the background indicates there is a town nearby. On the b

The Assumption of the Virgin
Oil on canvas. 1631 - 1635
Turchi, Alessandro
The Assumption of the Virgin
Oil on canvas. 1631 - 1635
Turchi, Alessandro

Esta pintura pertenece a una serie, formada inicialmente por nueve Fiestas de Nuestra Señora, que el Cardenal Gaspar de Borja y Velasco (1580-1645), embajador ante la Santa Sede, envió desde Roma en 1635 o antes para la decoración del nuevo oratorio de la reina en el Alcázar. Cinco de las nueve se conservan en el Prado y, al menos tres, se quemaron en el incendio del Alcázar en 1734. Atribuidas pr

Still Life with Apples, Walnuts and Sugar Cane
Oil on canvas. 1645
Medina Valbuena, Pedro de
Still Life with Apples, Walnuts and Sugar Cane
Oil on canvas. 1645
Medina Valbuena, Pedro de

The flat gray stone surface with a hollow in the left foreground bears various sorts of produce, mostly fruit and nuts. This, in turn, draws attention to a deep dish filled with walnuts in the middle ground behind a quince, several chestnuts and four apples. Further back, various short lengths of sugarcane fade into the shadows. The elements are laid out in a traditional manner to insure the neces

Portrait of a Young Gentleman
Oil on canvas. 1600 - 1605
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)
Portrait of a Young Gentleman
Oil on canvas. 1600 - 1605
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)

Both the large ruff the sitter is wearing and the technique used date this portrait to the beginning of the seventeenth century. The loose brushwork (in the form of subtle highlights, dabbing and small but decisive touches of colour) endow the face with great vivacity. Tha face also has great psychological depth. For some time, the sitter was thought to be the poet, Baltasar Eliseo de Medinilla, a

Philip IV
Oil on canvas. 1626 - 1628
Velázquez, Diego Rodríguez de Silva y
Philip IV
Oil on canvas. 1626 - 1628
Velázquez, Diego Rodríguez de Silva y

This is an extraordinary example of the eventful life of many royal portraits during the Siglo de Oro, and it shows just how much those paintings, rather than immutable artworks, were objects with a representative function and could thus be altered depending on the use they were assigned at any given time. The present bust portrait depicts King Philp IV (1605-1665) in the mid 1620s, when he was ju

Isabel de Borbón, Wife of Philip IV
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Villandrando, Rodrigo de
Isabel de Borbón, Wife of Philip IV
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Villandrando, Rodrigo de

The daughter of Henri IV of France and Marie de Médicis, Isabel de Borbón (1603-1644) was the first wife of Philip IV and the mother of Prince Baltasar Carlos and María Teresa of Austria. In Villandrando’s portrait, painted a year before Isabel became Queen of Spain, she wears a stiff, sumptuous dress that emphasises her presence and royal status. Although Spanish in cut, the

Saint Cecilia
Oil on canvas. After 1611
Grammatica, Antiveduto Della
Saint Cecilia
Oil on canvas. After 1611
Grammatica, Antiveduto Della

The Roman saint Cecilia was martyred for her faith. As the patron saint of music she is normally depicted playing an instrument, crowned with flowers and accompanied by the angel who defended her purity. The pronounced contrasts of light in this scene reveal the influence of Caravaggio that was evident in Grammatica’s work from 1605 onwards.

The Holy Family under an Oak Tree
Oil on panel. 1518 - 1520
Romano, Giulio (Giovanni Francesco Penni); Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio)
The Holy Family under an Oak Tree
Oil on panel. 1518 - 1520
Romano, Giulio (Giovanni Francesco Penni); Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio)

Leaning on a classical ruin, Saint Joseph looks at the Virgin Mary with the Christ Child in her lap. Jesus, in turn, is receiving a roll with the words Ecce Agnus Dei from Saint John. This Latin inscription meaning Lamb of God refers to the Passion of Christ, who sacrifices himself, just as lambs were sacrified by the Jews, in order to save humanity from sin. The oak tree standing behind the main

Nativity
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1610
Cajés, Eugenio
Nativity
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1610
Cajés, Eugenio

Eugenio was the son of Tuscan painter Patricio Cajés, who came to Spain to work for Philip II at the monastery of El Escorial. His mother, Casilda de la Fuente, was Spanish. He began studying painting with his father and later moved to Rome (1595-1599), where he discovered two new trends in painting that would largely define the course of art in the 17th century: Caravaggio’s chiaroscuro an

Exterior of Saint Peter’s, Rome
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1636
Codazzi, Viviano
Exterior of Saint Peter’s, Rome
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1636
Codazzi, Viviano

This painting depicts the façade of Saint Peter’s as it was designed by the architect Carlo Maderno and before the re-modelling undertaken by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, who had the clock tower on the right demolished and added the colonnade that exists today. The ceremony taking place in the foreground remains unidentified. The buildings in this canvas were painted by Codazzi, while Falcone was

The Adoration of the Magi
Oil on canvas. 1612 - 1614
Maíno, Fray Juan Bautista
The Adoration of the Magi
Oil on canvas. 1612 - 1614
Maíno, Fray Juan Bautista

On 14 February 1612 Juan Bautista Maíno signed the contract to execute the paintings for the monastery church of San Pedro Mártir in Toledo. Maíno agreed to a period of eight months to make the paintings, which had to portray the scenes and episodes specified by the prior of the monastery. Despite the agreement reached in the contract, the paintings were not completed until De

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