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Earthly Paradise
Oil on canvas. XVI century
Bassano (Workshop Of)
Earthly Paradise
Oil on canvas. XVI century
Bassano (Workshop Of)

This is a painting of rather mediocre quality for which the artists drew on several ricordi from the stock at the family bottega. To cite an example, the horse and pair of dogs on the right specifically repeat the ones that appear in a similar position in Adam Being Reprimanded (P21). This juxtaposition of standardised models explains the obvious problems of scale in the depiction of the animals,

Still Life with a Maid
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1633
Snyders, Frans
Still Life with a Maid
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1633
Snyders, Frans

This opulent still-life scene typical of the Baroque Flemish school includes a human figure and two animals, as was common in the period, in accordance with the tastes of the clients, whose wealth and prosperity was also reflected in this genre of paintings. Snyders´ clientele were members of the nobility and haute bourgeoisie who were interested in his paintings as testimonies to wealth as well a

Earthly Paradise
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1626
Brueghel el Joven, Pieter
Earthly Paradise
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1626
Brueghel el Joven, Pieter

En esta obra el pintor pone en escena una multitud de aves cantoras. Éstas se posan en las ramas de un árbol que, en acusada diagonal, separa la llanura del bosque; recurso típico de las composiciones de conciertos y alegorías del aire de Brueghel. A escala diminuta, en un claro entre la maleza, se reproduce la tentación de Adán y Eva; un caballo, parejas de cuadrúpedos, tigres, ciervos, dromedari

Abundance and the Four Elements
Oil on panel. Ca. 1615
Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
Abundance and the Four Elements
Oil on panel. Ca. 1615
Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

Abundance, personified by Ceres, goddess of fertility and agriculture, sits in front of a thicket of reeds at the edge of a forest. She has adorned her hair with wheat spikes -her attribute- and bears the horn of plenty under her left arm. Earth sits at her feet, offering her one of her fruits, she is personified by Flora, goddess of the earth and also of spring, which explains the flowers in her

Fable
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1580
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)
Fable
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1580
el Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)

This scene of a young man blowing on burning embers was already developed by El Greco in Italy. Here, the motif is complicated by a mischievous young man and a monkey. This possible allegory of sexual desire may also be inspired by a classical work that was often used at that time, Pliny the Elder´s Natural History. The lighting effects and color contrasts show how the Bassano influenced El Greco,

The Adoration of de Magi /King David receiving the Emissaries of the Twelve Tribes / The Queen of Sheba before Solomon
Oil on panel. Ca. 1515
Pseudo-Blesius
The Adoration of de Magi /King David receiving the Emissaries of the Twelve Tribes / The Queen of Sheba before Solomon
Oil on panel. Ca. 1515
Pseudo-Blesius

The author of this work has been identified as the painter of an Adoration of the Magi signed, apocryphally, Hericus Blesius Fecit (Munich, Alte Pinakothek). The Museo del Prado’s work presents the same subject on its central panel, while the lateral panels present Old-Testament scenes with King David and King Solomon. These two are considered prefigurations of Christ, which must have been the tri

Lazarus and Dives
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1570
Bassano, Leandro
Lazarus and Dives
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1570
Bassano, Leandro

The parable of Lazarus (Luke 16: 19-31) has been interpreted in many ways: an apology of charitable works; a comparison between salvation and perdition, and between gentiles (Lazarus) and Jews (Epulon, the rich man); and the dogs who lick Lazarus´s sores have even been held to be an allusion to the Dominican preachers and their miraculous cures. Aikema has provided examples of sermons and contempo

The Sense of Sight
Oil on panel. 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
The Sense of Sight
Oil on panel. 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

This set of paintings on the five senses was one of the most successful collaborations of Peter Paul Rubens and Jan Brueghel “the Elder”. Rubens placed his figures in the magnificent courtly scenes created by Brueghel as settings for these allegories of the senses, resulting in a series of enormous quality and esthetic appeal. The subject was widely employed in Flemish painting. Sight was consider

The Young Louis XV
Oil on canvas. 1714
Gobert, Pierre
The Young Louis XV
Oil on canvas. 1714
Gobert, Pierre

Wearing a child´s dress of branched yellow fabric with silver adornments and the sash and cross of the Order of the Saint-Esprit, the future monarch rests his right hand on a small dog that stands atop a chair partially covered by a curtain. His gesture seeks to calm the animal, who is barking at a monkey on the other side of the prince. The small simian is attempting to grab his leash, whic

Cybele and the Seasons within a Garland of Fruit
Oil on panel. 1615 - 1618
Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
Cybele and the Seasons within a Garland of Fruit
Oil on panel. 1615 - 1618
Balen, Hendrick Van; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

Two nymphs and numerous cupids hold a garland that frames a medallion where an offering to Ceres is depicted. The goddess of the Earth and of agriculture is shown being crowned by Spring while allegorical figures of the other seasons offer her their fruits. The cupids hold objects alluding to the signs of the Zodiac. Thus, the passage of time and the Earth´s life cycles are emphasized. This work i

Three Nymphs with the Horn of Plety
Oil on canvas. 1615 - 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul; Snyders, Frans
Three Nymphs with the Horn of Plety
Oil on canvas. 1615 - 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul; Snyders, Frans

Goddess of grains and the harvest, Ceres holds some corn cobs in her right hand while, with the left, she holds a horn of plenty. Two nymphs fill the cornucopia with fruits, symbolizing the Earth´s generosity. The subject is inspired by Ovid´s mythological tales. In this collaboration between two artists, something quite frequent among Flemish painters, Rubens made the figures of the goddess and h

Abundance
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1625
Brueghel The Younger, Jan
Abundance
Oil on copperplate. Ca. 1625
Brueghel The Younger, Jan

This type of allegorical representations of abundance or fecundity was very popular among cabinet paintings from this period. Artists such as Rubens, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Hendrick de Clerck and Hendrick van Balen, among others, also made such works, often in collaboration. Here, fertility is represented by a six-breasted figure at the center of the composition. She bears a horn of plenty and is

A Larder
Oil on canvas. 1642
Utrecht, Adriaen Van
A Larder
Oil on canvas. 1642
Utrecht, Adriaen Van

Adriaen van Utrecht was a leading still-life painter in Antwerp, producing paintings characterised by their large size and opulent content, works that are also striking for their compositions and pictorial technique. Paintings of this type reflected the wealth and cosmopolitan culture of their owners.

Earthly Paradise
Oil on panel. Ca. 1620
Brueghel The Younger, Jan
Earthly Paradise
Oil on panel. Ca. 1620
Brueghel The Younger, Jan

Como es habitual en Jan Brueghel el Joven, el modelo iconográfico para esta composición se encuentra en los paisajes de Adán y Eva en el Paraíso inventados por su padre, Jan Brueghel el Viejo, si bien los leones están tomados de "Daniel en el foso de los leones" (Milán, Pinacoteca Ambrosiana) y el ciervo es el mismo que figura en muchas de las guirnaldas de su progenitor. Sin embargo, al contrario

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

Monkeys in a Tavern
Oil on panel. Ca. 1660
Teniers The Younger, David
Monkeys in a Tavern
Oil on panel. Ca. 1660
Teniers The Younger, David

This work is part of the series of six panels of monkey scenes in the Museo Nacional del Prado (from P01805 to P01810). The subject matter is drawn from the oeuvre of Pieter Brueghel the Elder and Peter van der Borcht, which has been associated with the foolishness of man since the Middle Ages. Teniers successfully captures the ambivalence of mankind in its animal nature.A group plays cards in the

Taste, Hearing and Touch
Oil on unlined canvas. Ca. 1620
Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
Taste, Hearing and Touch
Oil on unlined canvas. Ca. 1620
Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

The dinner guests occupying the center of the composition symbolize the senses. Music and the singing children are hearing, and the young woman petting a mink is touch. The young woman preparing to eat some oysters symbolizes taste, while the monkey pulling on a cupid´s hair also symbolizes touch. Of equal significance are the animals and paintings in the room. The Annunciation on the top of the c

The Monkey Sculptor
Oil on panel. Ca. 1660
Teniers The Younger, David
The Monkey Sculptor
Oil on panel. Ca. 1660
Teniers The Younger, David

A monkey dressed as a sculptor works in his studio, making a statue of a satyr while another helps him and a third, dressed in elegant clothes, watches his work attentively. Other works by the artist are visible in the background, including the tomb of another simian. This work is paired with The Monkey Painter (P01805) and both offer Tenier´s critical vision of merely imitative artistic activity.

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