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Morán, Santiago

Madrid (Spain), ca. 1571 - Valladolid (Spain), 1626

Very little is known about this painter who worked mainly as a portraitist. His first known mention dates from 1597 and links him to Madrid and to Juan Pantoja de la Cruz, with whom he had special contact. In 1609, after a period in Valladolid while the Court was there (1601-1606) he succeeded Pantoja, who had died the previous year, as Philip III's chamber painter in Madrid. Documents show that, besides portraits, he made religious paintings, including a series on the life of Christ and four stories about the Virgin, which painter Mateo Serrano commissioned him to paint in 1613. At that time, Serrano was restoring paintings on the altarpiece at the church of La Asunción in Robledo de Chavela (Madrid). Only one religious canvas is unquestionably Morán's: "Saint Ildephonse Before the Virgin" (currently in Cartagena), and it reveals this artist's proximity to Pantoja's work, especially in its clear parallel to the "Saint Leocadia" that Pantoja painted for Cordoba Cathedral. His only known portrait is a likeness of Philip III's daughter, infanta Margarita Francisca, now at the Museo del Prado. It clearly repeats the models of court portraits by painters working for the Spanish crown and in fact, it has also been attributed to Sánchez Coello and Bartolomé González. Santiago Morán was also the father of painter Santiago Morán Cisneros (ca. 1610-1663), whose work is closer to that of Vicente Carducho (Ruiz, L. in: Del Greco a Goya. Obras maestras del Museo del Prado, Museo de Arte de Ponce, 2012, p. 90).

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