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The Sense of Hearing
Oil on panel. 1617 - 1618
Rubens, Peter Paul; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)
The Sense of Hearing
Oil on panel. 1617 - 1618
Rubens, Peter Paul; Brueghel The Elder, Jan (Jan 'velvet' Brueghel)

This set of paintings on the five senses (Sight, Hearing, Smell, Taste, Touch) 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 i

A Huntsman
Oil on panel. 1650 - 1653
Wouwerman, Philips
A Huntsman
Oil on panel. 1650 - 1653
Wouwerman, Philips

The original composition was enlarged on the right side with a section of wood of around 10.5 cm, glued against the grain. During the restoration carried out in 1994 it was noted that the preparation and execution of this section differed from the rest of the composition, indicating that it was added later. Isabella Farnese`s seal, printed on the back, can be found on the original panel but not in

The Death of the Consul Publius Decius
Oil on panel. 1616 - 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul
The Death of the Consul Publius Decius
Oil on panel. 1616 - 1617
Rubens, Peter Paul

This panel is one of the models designed by Rubens for a series of tapestries on the life of the Consul Publius Decius(4th century BC). It offers an extremely eloquent depiction of this Roman hero’s moral example: following a prediction in a dream, he stoically sacrificed his own life in exchange for his people’s final victory over the Latins.

Diana and Callisto
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1635
Rubens, Peter Paul
Diana and Callisto
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1635
Rubens, Peter Paul

When Rubens visited the Spanish court in Madrid from late August 1628 until April 1629, he copied many of the numerous paintings by Titian in the royal collection. He was seduced by the radical technique of broken brushstrokes characteristic of the late works of the Venetian, which inspired his own way of painting from this time until his death in 1640. He must also have been drawn by the emotiona

The Education of Achilles
Oil on panel. 1630 - 1635
Rubens, Peter Paul (And Workshop)
The Education of Achilles
Oil on panel. 1630 - 1635
Rubens, Peter Paul (And Workshop)

A model for the tapestry on the same subject that belongs to a series of eight about the Greek hero. The Story of Achilles is smaller than other projects by Rubens, but the quality of its sketches, models and tapestries make it one of his most important.Thetis entrusted the education of her son Achilles to the boy´s great-grandfather, the wise centaur Chiron, tutor of gods and heroes, who instruct

Constantine’s Triumphal Entry in Rome
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Gargiulo, Domenico, Called Micco Spadaro; Codazzi, Viviano
Constantine’s Triumphal Entry in Rome
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Gargiulo, Domenico, Called Micco Spadaro; Codazzi, Viviano

This work and Vespasian’s Triumphal Entry in Rome (P237) are among the earliest examples of the collaboration between Domenico Gargiulo (also known as Micco Spadaro) and Viviano Codazzi, in which the former painted the figures and the latter, the architectural backgrounds. These two paintings were part of a group that also included Lanfranco’s depiction of an emperor’s triumphal entry into Rome: T

Diana and her Nymphs hunting
Oil on oak panel. 1636 - 1637
Rubens, Peter Paul
Diana and her Nymphs hunting
Oil on oak panel. 1636 - 1637
Rubens, Peter Paul

Recognizable by the crescent-moon-shaped diadem on her head, Diana hunts deer with spears and dogs, accompanied by various nymphs. The extremely horizontal composition is one of the peculiarities of this work, which belongs to an important sect of sketches made by Rubens for the pictorial decoration of the Torre de la Parada. On these small panels, the painter defined the design, colors, forms and

Diana in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. 1739
Loo, Louis-Michel Van
Diana in a Landscape
Oil on canvas. 1739
Loo, Louis-Michel Van

Diana, the Roman goddess of the hunt, sleeps outdoors, leaning on a boulder and wrapped in a leopard skin. She wears her symbol, the crescent moon, on her head and her clothes are of classical inspiration. She is accompanied by her bow and arrows and a hunting horn. Van Loo painted numerous mythological scenes, generally characterized by a certain degree of eroticism. This was in keeping with the

The Birth of the Sun and the Triumph of Bacchus
Oil on canvas. 1761
Giaquinto, Corrado
The Birth of the Sun and the Triumph of Bacchus
Oil on canvas. 1761
Giaquinto, Corrado

This is a sketch of the fresco that Corrado Giaquinto painted in the former stairway at the Madrid’s Royal Palace, which is now the Hall of Columns. That fresco, his last work at the Royal Palace, is undoubtedly one of the finest paintings from Giaquinto’s Spanish period.He concluded it in 1762, so the sketch presented here must have been made slightly earlier. At the top is the figure of Apollo,

Family in a Garden
Oil on canvas. 1679
Kessel el Joven, Jan Van
Family in a Garden
Oil on canvas. 1679
Kessel el Joven, Jan Van

This scene of a family in a garden is a rare example of a group portrait in Spanish 17th-century art. Its uniqueness is explained by the fact that it was painted by a Flemish artist based in Madrid, who also included his self-portrait looking out of a window. Despite the appearance of everyday normality, the unknown sitters are surrounded by a wide range of symbols that refer to the virtues of fam

The Hare Hunt
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1665
Wouwerman, Philips
The Hare Hunt
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1665
Wouwerman, Philips

This painting is listed in the royal inventories as the companion piece to Hunting Party and Fishermen (P2147). It is a panoramic view in which hunters, animals and picturesque buildings are set in a sweeping landscape. However, here the wooded, mountainous scenery evidences the influence of Italianate landscape painting. The figure groupings are designed to steer the viewer`s gaze not to the back

Masquerade
Oil on panel. 1767
Paret y Alcázar, Luis
Masquerade
Oil on panel. 1767
Paret y Alcázar, Luis

This painting, prepared by Paret in an excellent drawing (British Museum in London, inv. 1890,1209.50) and titled Baile in máscara (The Masked Ball), on a cartouche as a kind of label, is one of the earliest known works by the artist. It demonstrates great technical and compositional skill in arranging a subtly illuminated interior filled with a multitude of figures. The varied dress, poses

The Crown of Thorns
Oil on panel. Ca. 1500
Osona, Rodrigo de; Osona, Francisco de
The Crown of Thorns
Oil on panel. Ca. 1500
Osona, Rodrigo de; Osona, Francisco de

This and five other panels at the Prado Museum (P06897, P06898, P06899, P06900, P06902), are some of the finest examples of the collaboration between Rodrigo and Francisco de Osona. They were probably designed as part of an altarpiece. The placement and physiognomy of the figures are in keeping with the style of this family of painters from Valencia. The diverse treatment of the paintings suggests

Water
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1700
Ezquerra, Jerónimo Antonio
Water
Oil on canvas. Ca. 1700
Ezquerra, Jerónimo Antonio

This wooded landscape with the ocean in the background is the setting for a group of maritime allegories. In the foreground, a male figure next to some rapids personifies one of the great rivers that exist in Nature, as was the customary representation during the Classical period. Various elements and animals related to water, such as turtles and seashells, are visible beside him. In the backgroun

The Rape of the Sabines
Oil on panel. 1496
Aspertini, Amico; Aspertini, Guido
The Rape of the Sabines
Oil on panel. 1496
Aspertini, Amico; Aspertini, Guido

These paintings (P524, P525) decorated two cassoni and were commissioned in 1496 in Bologna by Ludovico da Sala from Guido Aspertini for the betrothal of his daughter Angelica to Giovan Battista Bolognetti. It is generally agreed that Guido’s brother, Amico, participated in their execution, which would explain the quotations from classical statuary. Both scenes from classical Rome contained lesson

The Toilet of Venus
Oil on canvas. 1635 - 1640
Albani, Francesco
The Toilet of Venus
Oil on canvas. 1635 - 1640
Albani, Francesco

Francesco Albani was a much favoured pupil of Annibale Carracci. His success was partially due to mythological paintings such as The toilet of Venus (P1) and The judgement of Paris (P2), whose refined and lyrical view of nature helped disseminate the classical ideals of the Carracci`s landscapes. The toilet of Venus, c. 1635-40, is one of many versions Albani made of this subject (the most famous

The Birth of Venus
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Vos, Cornelis de
The Birth of Venus
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Vos, Cornelis de

El nacimiento de esta diosa aparece en la Teogonía de Hesiodo (188-ss): "(...) Vino el poderoso Urano conduciendo la noche, se echó sobre la tierra ansioso de amor y se extendió por todas partes. El hijo, saliendo de su escondite, logró alcanzarle con la mano izquierda, empuño con la derecha la prodigiosa hoz, enorme y de afilados dientes, y apresuradamente segó los genitales de su padre y luego l

Vespasian’s Triumphal Entry in Rome
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Gargiulo, Domenico, Called Micco Spadaro; Codazzi, Viviano
Vespasian’s Triumphal Entry in Rome
Oil on canvas. 1636 - 1638
Gargiulo, Domenico, Called Micco Spadaro; Codazzi, Viviano

This work and Constantine’s Triumphal Entry in Rome (P238) are among the earliest examples of the collaboration between Domenico Gargiulo (also known as Micco Spadaro) and Viviano Codazzi, in which the former painted the figures and the latter, the architectural backgrounds. These two paintings were part of a group that also included Lanfranco’s depiction of an emperor’s triumphal entry into Rome:

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