Inventory number
P03236
Author
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de (Spanish)
Title
Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos
Chronology
1798
Technique
Óleo
Support
Lienzo
Dimensions
205 cm x 133 cm
School
Española
Theme
Retrato
On display
Yes
Provenance
Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos, pagado el 19 de julio de 1798, Madrid. Legado a su amigo Juan José Arias de Saavedra en 1802. En fecha incierta, en la colección de Antonio Botija, descendiente del anterior. 1877, ofrecido por éste al Museo del Prado en ese año, no siendo aceptada su adquisición ante el informe preceptivo de la Real Academia de San Fernando. Mariano Santamaría, anticuario, Madrid 1887. Duques de las Torres, Madrid 1916. Vizcondesa de Irueste, Madrid 1921. Adquirido por el Estado con destino al Museo del Prado a los herederos de la anterior, Satrústegui Figueroa, Navarro Figueroa, Satrústegui y Sotomayor Basabe, en 1974.

An example of the perfect Enlightenment personage, Jovellanos was equally interested in the arts and sciences. In 1798 he became Minister of Grace and Justice as part of an ephemeral advanced and reforming cabinet. In this evocative and intimate portrait, he is depicted sitting, leaning on a table full of papers, with a serene, intelligent and somewhat melancholy gaze. He is soberly and elegantly dressed and, surprisingly, bears none of the decorations, medals or honorific sashes traditionally present in portraits of public figures.

In the background, Minerva, goddess of wisdom and the arts, extends her protective arm towards him. She rests on a shield with the coat of arms of the Royal Asturian Nautical and Mineralogical Institute, which was one of Jovellano's most beloved projects.

The folded paper bears the painter's signature and the name of the model.

 
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