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The Bivouac
Oil on panel. 1640 - 1650
Teniers The Younger, David
The Bivouac
Oil on panel. 1640 - 1650
Teniers The Younger, David

Of the artists who painted war scenes in the 17th century, none was as interested as David Teniers II in capturing images from behind the lines. With his customary tactile rigor, he depicts a plethora of military objects lying in the foreground with no apparent order and a handful of figures hanging cuirasses or helping their colleagues to remove their footgear. At the same time, he draws on one o

Saint John the Baptist and the Franciscan Heinrich von Werl
Oil on oak panel. 1438
Campin, Robert
Saint John the Baptist and the Franciscan Heinrich von Werl
Oil on oak panel. 1438
Campin, Robert

An inscription in gothic letters identifies the sitter and dates the work: "In the year 1438, I painted this effigy of Master Heinrich von Werl, Doctor of Cologne". A Provincial of the Franciscan Order in that German city beginning in 1432, Werl was full Professor of Theology and quite a famous preacher. On a trip to Tournai, he was able to contact the painter and have himself portrayed inside a r

Magdalena Parrella y Urbieta and her Daughter, Elisa Tapia y Parrella
Oil on canvas. 1850
Ribera y Fieve, Carlos Luis de
Magdalena Parrella y Urbieta and her Daughter, Elisa Tapia y Parrella
Oil on canvas. 1850
Ribera y Fieve, Carlos Luis de

Double portraits of this type, which were common in the mid-nineteenth century, were generally painted when the son or daughter was presented in society. The mother, depicted as seated, represented an example to the daughter, normally shown standing. In this case the richly furnished room and the sitter`s clothes and jewels indicate the wealthy status of this well-known family of bankers.

The Extraction of the Stone of Madness
Oil on oak panel. 1501 - 1505
Bosch, Hieronymus
The Extraction of the Stone of Madness
Oil on oak panel. 1501 - 1505
Bosch, Hieronymus

In the centre of a rectangular surface Bosch incised a circle in which he depicted this scene of Extracting the stone of madness. The resulting image is a mirror that offers a reflection of folly and human madness, located in a rural world remote from that of the nobility and urban life, hence the setting in the countryside in an open landscape. As found in miniature painting of the time, the arti

Hercules and the Erymanthian Boar
Oil on canvas. 1634
Zurbarán, Francisco de
Hercules and the Erymanthian Boar
Oil on canvas. 1634
Zurbarán, Francisco de

Hercules’s encounter with the Erimanthean bore is not the best known of his labors. At first glance, it would appear to be nothing more than a new demonstration of his capacity to vanquish evil and save humanity from its excesses. Zurbarán’s depiction places the hero in the foreground at the center of the composition. He is about to kill the colossal wild bore that was laying waste to the l

Self-portrait
Oil on canvas. 1810 - 1813
González Velázquez, Zacarías
Self-portrait
Oil on canvas. 1810 - 1813
González Velázquez, Zacarías

A member of a dynasty of artists that began with his grandfather, the sculptor Pablo González Velázquez (1664-1727), Zacarías González Velázquez initially trained with his father, the painter Antonio González Velázquez (1723-94). In 1777, he joined the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando, an institution to which he remained tied for the rest

The Concert
Oil on panel. Ca. 1875
Palmaroli y González, Vicente
The Concert
Oil on panel. Ca. 1875
Palmaroli y González, Vicente

An enormously versatile painter, Palmaroli also produced the small-format paintings known as tableautins popular with collectors at this period. Following Fortuny, his numerous genre scenes deploy a brilliant chromatic range and an extremely virtuoso technique. They depict inconsequential subjects, often inspired by the 18th century and set in richly decorated interiors that on occasions include i

Penitents in the Lower Basilica of Assisi
Oil on canvas mounted on panel. 1874
Jiménez Aranda, José
Penitents in the Lower Basilica of Assisi
Oil on canvas mounted on panel. 1874
Jiménez Aranda, José

Jiménez Aranda sets this scene of believers paying penance inside the well-known medieval basilica of Assisi, in Italy. Some of them carry large crosses and drag chains, while others pray at an altar, or chat with other characters dressed in eighteenth-century clothing. The subject clearly alludes to Goya´s abundant paintings of religious festivities. Nevertheless, the setting in an Italian

Margaret before the Mirror
Oil on canvas. 1866
Domínguez Sánchez, Manuel
Margaret before the Mirror
Oil on canvas. 1866
Domínguez Sánchez, Manuel

This painting illustrates a scene from Goethe´s Faust. Specifically, the moment when Margaret finds a jewelry box in her bedroom closet. Mephistopheles gave it to Faust as a tempting gift for his beloved. The young woman enjoys hanging a string of pearls around her neck and observing the beautiful results in the mirror. A spinning wheel is visible in the dark background. This work shows the influe

Henry IV
Oil on canvas. Second half of the XVII century
Arco, Alonso del
Henry IV
Oil on canvas. Second half of the XVII century
Arco, Alonso del

This heroic full-length portrait presents the king under a red-and-gold curtain with a landscape in the background. He wears a crown and, under a blue tunic, armor. His right hand rests on the head of a lion whose paw rests, in turn, on the coat of arms of Castile and León, territories ruled by Henry IV. The arms are surrounded by pomegranate flowers with the slogan, AGRO DULCE, an insignia

The Attributes of the Virgin
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1778
Bayeu, Francisco
The Attributes of the Virgin
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1778
Bayeu, Francisco

These are sketches for the frescoes adorning the main altar of the chapel in the Palace of Aranjuez. The brilliant, highly detailed technique reveals the lingering influence of the Italian, Corrado Giaquinto. Angels bear symbols which allude to the purity of the Virgin: the mirror without blemish reflecting eternal light, and a bunch of white lilies and an open oyster with a pearl as symbols of th

The Archangel Raphael and Tobias
Oil on canvas. 1639 - 1640
Claude (Lorrain, Byname Of Claude Gellée)
The Archangel Raphael and Tobias
Oil on canvas. 1639 - 1640
Claude (Lorrain, Byname Of Claude Gellée)

This painting shows the moment when, following an angel’s instructions, Tobias pulls out an enormous fish’s heart and entrails to cure his father’s blindness with them (Book of Tobit: VII, 15). The setting is a landscape with a flowing river that runs diagonally behind the figures. Three fifths of the canvas are occupied by the sky, beginning at the top with an intense blue and concluding at the h

Sight and Smell
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Francken II, Frans; Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
Sight and Smell
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Francken II, Frans; Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

This canvas and its companion, Taste, Hearing and Touch (P1404), represent the five senses embodied by female figures in palatial interiors. The sense of smell is conveyed by a woman holding flowers, while Sight contemplates herself in a mirror held by a cherub. They are located in a hall filled with paintings and sculptures, a sort of cabinet of paintings that could reflect an idealized represent

Spain pays Homage to Religion and Faith
Oil on canvas. 1759
Giaquinto, Corrado
Spain pays Homage to Religion and Faith
Oil on canvas. 1759
Giaquinto, Corrado

In what is now the stairway at Madrid’s Royal Palace, Corrado Giaquinto developed a program depicting the Spanish Monarchy, its virtues and its historical mission to serve and defend Religion. Allegorical representations of Religion and the Catholic Church appear at the centre of Spain pays homage to Religion and to the Church, 1759. Religion is depicted as a woman carrying a cross in her left han

The Immaculate Conception
Oil on canvas. 1767 - 1769
Tiepolo, Giovanni Battista
The Immaculate Conception
Oil on canvas. 1767 - 1769
Tiepolo, Giovanni Battista

This majestic image was part of a cycle of seven altarpieces commissioned in 1767 for the new royal church of San Pascual Bailón at Aranjuez, founded by Charles III in the same year. The altarpieces comprised the entire pictorial decoration of this Alcantarine Franciscan church, which was built in an austere classical style. The subjects of the altarpieces reflected some of the most importa

Las Meninas
Oil on canvas. 1656
Velázquez, Diego Rodríguez de Silva y
Las Meninas
Oil on canvas. 1656
Velázquez, Diego Rodríguez de Silva y

This is one of Velázquez`s largest paintings and among those in which he made most effort to create a complex and credible composition that would convey a sense of life and reality while enclosing a dense network of meanings. The artist achieved his intentions and Las Meninas became the only work to which the writer on art Antonio Palomino devoted a separate section in his history of Spanis

Self-Portrait
Oil on canvas. 1815
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Self-Portrait
Oil on canvas. 1815
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de

Goya deliberately presents himself here as vulnerable and fragile, revealing the most serene and welcoming facet of his personality. A dark background painted with rapid, energetic crossing brushstrokes adds presence to his reddish-brown frock coat, which contrasts with his very white, open-necked shirt, both of which are painted with finer brushstrokes than the background. This technique, in the

Tomasa de Aliaga, Widow of Manuel Pablo Salcedo
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1787
Carnicero, Antonio
Tomasa de Aliaga, Widow of Manuel Pablo Salcedo
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1787
Carnicero, Antonio

The inscription on the sheet of paper on the table records that the sitter was nursemaid to one of Charles IV’s daughters, the Infanta María Amalia (1779-1798). A typical portrait of the period, it depicts an elderly sitter of elevated social rank due to her position at Court, wearing rich clothing and jewels that indicate her wealth. This canvas has also been attributed to Agustín E

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