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Still Life with Chocolate Service
Oil on canvas. 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Chocolate Service
Oil on canvas. 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

When describing the work of this prolific painter of still lifes, it is frequently said that Luis Meléndez included only commonplace objects in his canvases; this painting, in fact, offers the exception that proves the rule. Amid the various objects represented here are a porcelain cup and large saucer, or plate, which seem to be East Asian rather than Spanish. Indeed, they may be Cantonese

Still Life with Small Pears, Bread, Flask, Bowl and Dry Leaves
Oil on canvas. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Small Pears, Bread, Flask, Bowl and Dry Leaves
Oil on canvas. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Sobre una tosca mesa de madera, descrita táctilmente con los pequeños detalles de la calidad del material, visibles en nudos y muescas, aparecen desordenadamente situadas unas cuantas “peritas de San Juan” y un pan en segundo término, junto al cual se eleva una alcarraza de loza muy blanca que bien pudiera ser andaluza. Se denomina popularmente “jarra de cuatro picos” y muestra una decoración de i

Francis Basset, 1st Baron of Dunstanville
Oil on canvas. 1778
Batoni, Pompeo
Francis Basset, 1st Baron of Dunstanville
Oil on canvas. 1778
Batoni, Pompeo

This full-length portrait by Pompeo Batoni shows a young English nobleman dressed in a scarlet coat, posing against the Roman countryside. The picture conforms to the Grand Tour portrait model of which Batoni, together with other artists such as Anton Raphael Mengs, became a leading practitioner, attaining success particularly among British patrons. Here the sitter is holding a walking stick and a

Still Life with Oysters, Garlic, Eggs, Pot and Pan
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Oysters, Garlic, Eggs, Pot and Pan
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

This highly original still life presents various oysters in the fore and middle grounds—a relatively infrequent element in Meléndez’s paintings. The foreground is completed by some cloves of garlic and a decorated ceramic plate, probably from Talavera. Behind them, the powerful volume of an enormous copper pot vies for the leading role in this composition. It is tilted, as one edge rests on

Still Life with Plate of Pears and Morello Cherries
Oil on canvas. 1773
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Plate of Pears and Morello Cherries
Oil on canvas. 1773
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Fans and Ring Loaves
Oil on canvas. 1778
Bayeu y Subías, Ramón
Fans and Ring Loaves
Oil on canvas. 1778
Bayeu y Subías, Ramón

A cartoon painted in 1778 for a tapestry to hang over the dining room door at the el Pardo Palace. Preparatory drawings by the artist´s brother, Francisco Bayeu, are at the Biblioteca Nacional and in a private collection in London.

Charles III in Hunting Dress
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1786
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Charles III in Hunting Dress
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1786
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de

A portrait of King Charles III (1716-1788), son of Philip V and Elizabeth of Farnesio, shortly before he died in Madrid on December 14, 1788. The king appears in a royal hunting preserve, either around El Escorial, or between the El Pardo Palace and the mountains of Madrid. He is dressed as a hunter, with the sashes of the Orders of Carlos III, Saint Januarius and the Holy Ghost, as well as the Go

Still Life with Partridges, Onions, Garlic and Vessels
Oil on canvas. Last third of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Partridges, Onions, Garlic and Vessels
Oil on canvas. Last third of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Hunting subjects are rare in Meléndez's work. Here, two multicolored partridges are the composition's main theme. Alongside them, in the foreground, are two cloves of garlic, some paper packages and the onions. In the middle ground, two Alcorcón-style earthenware bowls hold three crockery plates with poppy decorations, probably from Talavera or Puente del Arzobispo. The painter's customary method

Still Life with Watermelon, Pastries, Bread and Wine
Oil on canvas. 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Watermelon, Pastries, Bread and Wine
Oil on canvas. 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Luis Meléndez distinguished himself as the greatest bodegón, or still-life, painter in late eighteenth-century Spain. By this time, the popularity of the genre had declined in Spain and was not practiced by any of Meléndez’ contemporaries at court. Even so, Meléndez painted over one hundred bodegones in his lifetime, leading art historians to infer that he took a person

Still Life with Apples, Nuts, Boxes of Sweets and Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1759
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Apples, Nuts, Boxes of Sweets and Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1759
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Still Life with Limes, Box of Jelly, Butterfly and Vessels
Oil on canvas. Third quarter of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Limes, Box of Jelly, Butterfly and Vessels
Oil on canvas. Third quarter of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Some limes, laid out with the artist's habitual disorder, occupy almost half the canvas. Behind them, a honey pot of the popular green-glazed type from Biar or Lucena shows the painter's eye for detail. In the background, a box of jelly lies open on a castañuela plate. Behind it, a silver or pewter saucer holds a Tonalá type Mexican ceramic cup. The butterfly hovering over it all is interesting fo

The Triumph of the Lamb of God
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1778
Bayeu, Francisco
The Triumph of the Lamb of God
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1778
Bayeu, Francisco

This is a sketch for the vault above the high altar in the chapel of Aranjuez palace. God the Father is enthroned and embraces the Mystic Lamb, while angels spread the apocalyptic message inscribed on parchment: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honour and glory and blessing” (Apocalypse 5, 12).

Still Life with a Plate of Cherries, Plums a Pitcher and Cheese
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with a Plate of Cherries, Plums a Pitcher and Cheese
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

The first thing to catch the viewer’s eye is a splendid earthenware pitcher with a typical 18th-century tin-oxide white glaze and a Solomonic braided handle. The bright reflections of light on its curved surface contrast with the play of straight and curved lines that define the cheese resting beside it, and with the wavy-edged rococo plate in the immediate foreground, which overflows with cherrie

Still Life with Plums, Figs and Bread
Oil on canvas. Second half of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Plums, Figs and Bread
Oil on canvas. Second half of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Se ve un plato, del tipo “castañuela”, de borde historiado -siguiendo un diseño popular- que posiblemente posea un origen talaverano; ejerce el papel de recipiente desbordado por las ciruelas, algunas en ramo, que lo colman. A un lado, sobre una servilleta doblada, una rosca de pan refleja con acierto el impacto de la luz; al otro, tres higos rellenan el vacío de la izquierda, procurando equilibra

The Prophecy of Isaiah
Oil on canvas. 1778 - 1779
Bayeu, Francisco
The Prophecy of Isaiah
Oil on canvas. 1778 - 1779
Bayeu, Francisco

The prophet Isaiah is depicted on clouds, surrounded by angels and pointing to one of them, who holds a scroll with the following Latin text concerning the birth of the Messiah: “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel”. Bayeu’s canvas, which is a preparatory sketch for the ceiling of the high altar in the chapel of the royal palace in Aranjuez, reveals th

Still Life with Melon, Figs, Apples, Wineskin, and Picnic Hamper in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. Third quarter of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Melon, Figs, Apples, Wineskin, and Picnic Hamper in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. Third quarter of the XVIII century
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Still Life with Breams, Oranges, Garlic, Seasoning and Kitchen Utensils
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Breams, Oranges, Garlic, Seasoning and Kitchen Utensils
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Two splendid sea breams play the leading role here. They are surrounded by lesser motifs, including oranges, a kitchen towel, a head of garlic, and packet of what is probably spice, two terracotta bowls from Alcorcón, a long-handled pan, a mortar whose pestle leans into the background, and a cruet that participates in this work’s careful study of light as a means of defining volumes, divers

Still Life with Pomegranates, Apples, Haw Berries and Grapes in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. 1771
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Pomegranates, Apples, Haw Berries and Grapes in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. 1771
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

Meléndez has managed to integrate different fruits in a disordered thematic association that combines open pomegranates -showing the richness of their transparent seeds- with grapes, elongated apples and haws. The composition is structured in an original manner: the base is the smooth surface of a stone with irregular edges. The setting is a landscape with trees in semi-darkness silhouetted

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