Inventory number
P07020
Author
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de (Spanish)
Title
The Duchess of Alba and her Duenna
Chronology
1795
Technique
Óleo
Support
Lienzo
Dimensions
33 cm x 27,7 cm
School
Española
Theme
Género y sociedad
On display
Yes
Provenance
Duquesa de Alba (?), 1802. Por herencia a Tomás de Berganza, 1807. Por herencia a su hijo, Luis de Berganza, Madrid, 1834. Por herencia a sus descendientes, Carmen Berganza de Martín (Madrid, ca. 1900), Pilar Martín Berganza, Antonio Martín. Venta Sotheby's, Madrid, 27-II-1985.

The lively, somewhat childish character of Cayetana, the Duchess of Alba, is reflected in this little canvas. Her back is turned to the viewer, but she is recognizable by her abundantly curly black hair. She plays at frightening her duenna, Rafaela Luisa Velázquez, known as “la Beata” (“the Sanctimonious”). The Duchess shows the old woman a coral charm of the sort designed to ward off the evil eye. The latter, in turn, protects herself with a cross, as if it were the devil himself.

This work is signed and dated with incisions at the lower right.

 
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