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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 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

Dance on the Banks of the Manzanares
Oil on canvas. XVIII century
Bayeu y Subías, Ramón
Dance on the Banks of the Manzanares
Oil on canvas. XVIII century
Bayeu y Subías, Ramón

Table
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1650
Benedetti, Andries
Table
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1650
Benedetti, Andries

On a table partially covered by a green tablecloth, the painter has placed a white cloth, delicate gold-worked jars and glasses that reflect the light, a dish with ham, bread and a large basket of peaches and several types of grapes. There is also a half-peeled lemon, typical of Nordic still-lifes. In the background, there is a large red curtain and a gallery with columns. Charged with symbolic an

Cats fighting in a Larder
Oil on canvas. 1630 - 1640
Vos, Paul de
Cats fighting in a Larder
Oil on canvas. 1630 - 1640
Vos, Paul de

With the owners or house servants away, the animals sneak into the larder, giving free rein to their instincts. This leads to a fight. Scenes of animal fights in domestic settings were customary in mid-seventeenth-century Flemish painting. They were also frequent in the literature of proverbs, where they were interpreted as moral allusions to the abandonment of responsibilities and their consequen

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

Last Supper
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1586
Bassano, Francesco
Last Supper
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1586
Bassano, Francesco

Although Bettini noted a number of paternal precedents for this painting, it is a personal interpretation by Francesco of the gospel passage. Three versions are known, of which the Prado painting is the last. The first, dated about 1585, was auctioned by Sotheby´s of Florence in 1984, and there is a preparatory drawing of the figures of the elderly man with a bear and the page on the left (V

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

Saint Benedict blessing the Bread
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1655
Rizi, Juan Andrés
Saint Benedict blessing the Bread
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1655
Rizi, Juan Andrés

A member of a leading family of Madrid painters, Juan Rizi entered the Benedictine Order. Most of his worksdepict subjects related to the Order such as its saints and illustrious members. This canvas depicts one of Saint Benedict’s miracles and has a clearly Eucharistic content. It was painted for the Monastery of San Juan Bautista in Burgos.

Herod’s Feast (sketch)
Oil on canvas. XVII century
Carreño de Miranda, Juan
Herod’s Feast (sketch)
Oil on canvas. XVII century
Carreño de Miranda, Juan

Herod and Herodias appear at the right of the composition. Sitting at a table painted in foreshortened perspective, they look on—the king with a stupefied expression—as Salome presents them with the payment for her dance: John the Baptist’s head on a platter(Mark, 6 21-29). The skillfully lit architectural background clearly recalls Venice. The other figures in the scene are standing, which contri

The Last Supper
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Tristán, Luis
The Last Supper
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1620
Tristán, Luis

This canvas depicts the moment when Christ blesses the bread and institutes the Sacrament of the Eucharist. The figures resemble those of El Greco, Tristán’s first master, but the colour and precise depiction of the foodstuffs on the table reveal a different aesthetic. By incorporating a still-life motif the artist makes use of one of the most innovative artistic genres of the seventeenth c

Morocans
Oil on panel. 1872 - 1874
Fortuny, Mariano
Morocans
Oil on panel. 1872 - 1874
Fortuny, Mariano

Fortuny’s predilection for beautifully colored and very carefully painted panels is perfectly exemplified by the present work, which reveals his mastery of tableautin, a type of painting that garnered considerable commercial success for artists such as Jean-Louis-Ernest Meissonier (1815-1891), although the latter’s execution was much more meticulous and drawn. The Orientalist genre was also the ob

Still Life with Fruit
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1660
Arellano, Juan de
Still Life with Fruit
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1660
Arellano, Juan de

A still life with peaches and pears on a pewter plate. Arellano is known fundamentally as an excellent flower painter, although his workshop is known to have produced paintings with other subjects, especially still lifes with fruit, which were subsequently sold in that artist´s own shop, facing the church of San Felipe. This canvas is the only known work in that genre signed by the artist, w

Still Life with Salmon, Lemon and three Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Salmon, Lemon and three Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1772
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

This superb example of the artist's virtuosity at capturing elements with a direct and realistic language can be considered a work from late in his career. A sole lemon in the foreground offsets the group of elements consisting of a slice of fresh salmon and various cooking utensils, including a copper vessel, a pot of the same material and an Alcorcón style jug with a bit of crockery as a lid. A

Table with Desserts
Oil on canvas. Second third of the XVII century
Benedetti, Andries
Table with Desserts
Oil on canvas. Second third of the XVII century
Benedetti, Andries

In a room open to a landscape is a table with various foodstuffs, along with metalwork, dishes and even a pipe. The placement of numerous objects on a broad wooden surface is customary in works by Jan Davidsz de Heem (1606-1683/1684), to whom this work was first attributed. It had previously been considered the work of Benedetti through comparison with his other still lifes. The casual aspect offe

Still Life with Plums, Figs, Bread, Barrel, Jug and Other Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1760 - 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Plums, Figs, Bread, Barrel, Jug and Other Vessels
Oil on canvas. 1760 - 1770
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

A compendium of common motifs in Meléndez´s oeuvre is found in this painting, affording it a sense of proximity and trueness to life of great artistic and documentary value. Set out among plums and figs on the characteristic wooden tabletop with visible grains and knots are a loaf of bread and a typical Talavera or Puente del Arzobispo wedding jug in white with an ochre-yellow antimon

Still Life with Jug, Bread and Basket with Tableware
Oil on canvas. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio
Still Life with Jug, Bread and Basket with Tableware
Oil on canvas. 1760
Meléndez, Luis Egidio

In the foreground of this painting, a loaf of bread rests on a knife, its foreshortened handle jutting out past the edge of the wooden surface on which the various objects are arranged. Next to it sits a coarse, glazed earthenware jug, which could hold milk or some kind of preserved food. The style of the jug recalls pottery traditionally produced in Alcorcón and Camporreal (towns within the provi

Still Life with Pomegranates and Grapes
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1643
Zurbarán, Juan de
Still Life with Pomegranates and Grapes
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1643
Zurbarán, Juan de

Juan de Zurbarán, the son of Francisco, was one of the most original and gifted Spanish still-life painters of the seventeenth century. This work is based on a similar still life by the artist, dated 1643. It reveals Zurbarán’s ability to recreate textures, his masterly use of effects of chiaroscuro and his interest in complex compositions.

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