ZURBARAN: STYLISTIC TRAITS The Holy House of Nazareth (c.1630) --Mood of profound quietude and stillness --Simplicity in presentation --Limited (and often subdued) colors over wide areas --Sculptural, often powerful, quality of relief (Pacheco: “ relief is the most important aspect of color”) --Humble and mundane; emphasis on tangible, domestic, understandable terms; religion tied to daily life --Realism --Archaism
ZURBARAN --Born 1598 in the village of Fuente de Cantos. Went to Seville to train for three years with a journeyman artist named Pedro Diaz de Villanueva. --His early works show that this training was probably deficient. --Set up his first shop in the town of Llerena, about 60 miles outside of Seville, where he could paint in a less competitive market.
ZURBARAN: EARLY WORKS In 1629, a city council meeting in Seville is called to discuss Zurbaran. His paintings for the monastic orders in the city are cited and especially Christ on the Cross in San Pablo. One of the council members states that “ painting is not among the lesser ornaments of a republic, but rather one of the greater . . . (and) the city should attempt to persuade Francisco Zurbaran to move here to live.” The motion inviting Zurbaran to live in Seville was passed.
Peter Nolasco saw seven stars fall from Heaven and when they dug at that spot, found a miraculous image of the Virgin under a large bell. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Mercedarians
ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Dominicans The Apparition of the Virgin to the Monks of Soriano (1626-27) In 1530, the Virgin appeared to a Dominican brother in an Italian monastery and showed him St. Dominic’s true likeness to guide further representations of him. She told him that Dominic should be shown with lilies in one hand and a book in the other.
ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Carthusians St. Bruno and the Miracle of the Uneaten Meat (c.1626) Restriction against eating meat: St. Hugh had been providing food for the nascent order. On Quinquagesima Sunday (the Sunday seven weeks before Easter) he sent them a ration of meat. The brothers debated whether or not the order should eat meat, and they all fell asleep at the table; 45 days later, on Ash Wednesday, they were all still asleep. Hugh heard a report that they were sitting at table with meat in front of them—as it was Holy Week, this should be forbidden. Hugh came to find out what was going on and the brothers woke up; they took the incident as a sign from God that they should not eat meat.
ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Carthusians St. Bruno and the Miracle of the Uneaten Meat (c.1626) St. Hugh entering Groggy: waking up Christ on Mother’s lap: asleep, like the monks had been
--In a mountainous, rural area between Toledo and Caceres --Its foundation and site are related to a miracle: in 1320, a herdsman discovered a calf dead near where his cattle were grazing. He decided to skin the animal; he made a cross- shaped incision on its chest, but the animal sprang back to life. Simultaneously the Virgin Mary appeared and told him to report the miracle to the priests in Caceres and have them dig in the spot she appeared. They discovered there a perfectly preserved image of her (The Virgin of Guadalupe). ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
--A small church was initially built at the site. --King Alonzo XI of Castile visited the site and became a devotee of the Virgin of Guadalupe. He donated money for a new church, which was built in 1337. In 1340 he entrusted his fortunes to the Virgin of Guadalupe when he fought against the Moors at Salado. When he was victorious, he vowed to enrich her shrine. He also secured for himself and his descendents patronage of the church. It thus became tied to the monarchy, which promoted the Virgin and the monastery as national symbols. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
--During the 14 th and 15 th centuries Guadalupe was the most important religious site in Spain, a prominent pilgrimage destination and the spiritual center of the Reconquista. Kings and generals would come to pray; King Enrique IV had his tomb installed on the main altar. Ferdinand and Isabella especially were major supporters of the monastery, and Isabella was made an honorary brother. Both Columbus and Cortez came to give their thanks for their successes in the New World. The priors of Guadalupe were important as both political and religious advisors. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
--During the 16 th century the importance of Guadalupe declined. Charles V, in possession of a world- wide empire, only found time to visit once. When he retired it was not to Guadalupe, but to a rival monastery at Yuste. The construction of El Escorial under Philip II further reduced the prestige of Guadalupe. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
--To combat its declining fortunes, the monastery began a revitalization program in the late 16 th century. --First, from 1590-97, a new reliquary chapel was constructed. --In 1597 renovations were started on the high altar. A new altarpiece with paintings and sculptures was commissioned from El Greco, and Philip II donated 20,000 ducats. For unknown reasons work was soon stopped. A series of problems prevented the altarpiece from being completed for 20 years; its final form was the work of painters Vicente Carducho and Eugenio Cajes, and sculptor Giraldo de Merlo. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
--From 1621-23, a brother who was also a trained painter, Fray Juan de Santa Maria, decorated the cloister with 32 scenes from the history of the monastery and miracles attributed to the Virgin of Guadalupe. --In 1638, under the direction of Prior Diego de Montalvo, a contract was signed with a Carmelite monk who was also an architect to plan and construct a new sacristy; Zurbaran was contracted to decorate the new sacristy with eight paintings of scenes from the lives of Guadalupe’s monks. He commenced upon them immediately and they were all delivered within a year. ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites)
ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites) The commission: 8 paintings monks, all from Guadalupe; all of them had lived during the monastery’s glory days in the late 14 th - 15 th centuries.
ZURBARAN: MONASTIC ORDERS—Guadalupe (Hieronymites) --History of the monastery --Ties between the monastery and kings --Influence of the monastery in both religion and politics --The monastery as a sacred space of miraculous occurrences
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA) The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678) The Doctrine of the Immaculate Conception: idea that Mary was conceived free of Original Sin— “ immaculate” (clean) “ conception” (conceived in the womb), or conceived free from by Original Sin. Untainted by Original Sin, she was pure, and thus an appropriate vessel in which God could be born in the flesh. Immaculists: believe in the doctrine Maculists: do not believe in the doctrine
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA) --The idea begins in the Eastern (Greek) church c.150 AD, but is not initially popular with Church scholars. --St. Augustine did not approve, believing that our parents transfer Original Sin to us all, and Mary should not be exempt. --Important scholars during the Middle Ages also did not approve. St. Bernard, for instance, favored an alternate doctrine called Sanctification according to which Mary was conceived with Original Sin like all other people, but purified (sanctified) in Anne’s womb. The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678)
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA) --The Dominicans, under the influence of St. Thomas Aquinas who thought the idea was illogical, became a major voice against the Immaculate Conception. --The Franciscans, however, favored it, and the idea especially took hold in Spain by the 13 th century. It was there called Lullism after Ramon Lull, a theologian who defended the idea; Dominicans who debated the Lullist position were expelled from the country. The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678)
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA) --Even though the Church itself had not officially accepted the doctrine, and gave no indication that it would do so, the Immaculate Conception received royal and clerical support in Spain. --Confraternities to support and celebrate the idea were started and feast days were instituted; various Spanish orders took on the challenge of defending the Virgin’s purity and immaculate status. The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678)
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Attributes Enclosed garden: A new Eve, a new Eden
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Attributes Sun and moon: from the Song of Solomon, which mentions “she who looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon clear as the sun;” the passage was taken as a prefiguration of the Virgin
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Attributes Sealed fountain: pure waters
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Attributes Rose without thorns
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Attributes Star of the Sea: from Revelation and old liturgical hymns
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678) --The debate over Mary’s immaculate status intensified during the latter 16 th century. --The Council of Trent, wanting to avoid a rift in the Catholic community and present a unified front against the Protestants, tried to skirt the issue and stated that everyone could have their own opinion on the matter, and told both sides to stop accusing the other of being heretics—this pleased neither side. --In 1570, Pope Paul IV prohibited public discussion of the matter.
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate The Immaculate Conception of Marshall Soult by Murillo (1678) Early 17 th century: --1614: in Cordoba a priest violates the Papal orders by giving a sermon championing the Immaculate Conception. He is denounced but absolved by his bishop. --1615: uproar in Seville after a Dominican book is found to have discoursed against the Immaculate Conception. A Dominican sermon on Sanctification was met with riots, protests, assemblies, and feasts promoting Immaculism. Indulgences given to those who participate.
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate Immaculate Conception with Miguel Cid by Pacheco --1617: Pope Paul V accedes to the request of Philip III and prohibits anyone from defending or even publicly discussing Sanctification; huge celebrations ensue, especially in Seville. There are fireworks, parades, bullfights, and jousts. The Franciscans lead a candlelight procession around a Dominican monastery and taunt the monks within. In Granada, crowds of celebrating Immaculists express their joy by beating up Dominican monks.
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate Seville Honoring the Immaculate Virgin by Juan de las Roelas --Eventually the Immaculist side realized that they have not really won anything at all, and they suspected the Pope’s edict was simply designed to placate them rather than support the doctrine. Efforts to promote Immaculism were renewed during the 1620s. --As king, Philip IV especially championed Immaculism and attempted to sway the Pope. --So dedicated to the cause were the artists of Seville that students in the local painting academy had to swear an oath of allegiance to the doctrine.
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate Immaculate Conception by Zurbaran (1630s) --1644: at the end of his pontificate, just before his death, Urban VIII issues a strange and surprising edict: Catholics are no longer allowed to use the adjective “ immaculate” to modify “ conception.” Even though they can still technically refer to the “ conception of Mary Immaculate,” the Immaculists take this as a severe setback, if not outright insult. When news reaches Spain there are furious protests, especially in Seville where vandals defy the decree by posting the words “Immaculate Conception” throughout the city.
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION (INMACULADA)—Debate Immaculate Conception by Alonso Cano (1648) --1655: after an intensive campaign by especially the Franciscans, the new Pope, Alexander VII, concedes that “immaculate” and “ conception” can again be used together. --1661: Alexander VII issues a bull strongly endorsing Immaculism. He mentions the antiquity and popularity of the belief, renews pro-Immaculist decretals, and gives blessings to the cult and the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. The news is receive with great joy in Spain, and especially in Seville celebrations are organized.
RIBERA: EARLY WORKS Sense of Taste (1613-16) --Born in Jativa, Spain (near Valencia) in 1591, to a family of shoemakers --Probably trained in Valencia --No records of his activities until 1611, when he received payment for a now lost painting in Parma, Italy --By 1613 in Rome, and a member of the Academy of St. Luke there --Apparently lived a “ disorderly life,” and left Rome after a few years to escape creditors
RIBERA: NAPLES St. Jerome and the Angel (1626) --By 1616 had moved to Naples; will live and work there until he dies in 1652 --Becomes leading painter in Naples, often working for the Spanish viceroys there --Known as “La Spagnoletto” because of his Spanish heritage, and signs his paintings as “Jusepe de Ribera, Spaniard” “ I judge that Spain is a pious mother to foreigners and a very cruel stepmother to her own native sons.”—Ribera
RIBERA: NAPLES—Mid-career and later works Vision of St. Bruno (1643) In 1643 or 44, started suffering from unknown illness which plauged him for several years and left him unable to paint for long periods. From 1644-46 he painted almost nothing at all. He began painting again in 1647, periodic bouts of illness would cause interruptions in his work for the rest of his life.
FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: RIBERA Magdalena Ventura with her Husband and Son (1631) Famous Italian bearded woman For the Duke of Alcala
FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: RIBERA Caption: THE GREAT WONDER OF NATURE—Magdalena Ventura, from the town of Accomoli in Central Italy, or in the vulgar tongue Abruzzi, in the Kingdom of Naples, aged 52 years, the unusual thing about her being that when she was 37 she began to become hairy and grew a beard so long and thick that it seems more like that of any gentleman than a woman who had borne 3 sons by her husband, Felici de Amici, whom you see here. Jusepe de Ribera . . . painted this scene marvelously from life on the orders of Ferdinand III, Third Duke of Alcala, Viceroy of Naples, on the 16 th of February, 1631.
FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: DWARVES Dwarves and cripples by Velazquez
FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: DWARVES By Juan van der Hamen y Leon and Juan de Carreno y Miranda
A marvel : fascinating, unique Caption: “Great Wonder of Nature” “ In the rooms of the viceroy was an extremely famous painter who was making a portrait of an Abruzzi woman, married and the mother of many children, who has a completely masculine face, with a beautiful black beard more than a palmo long and a very hairy chest. His excellency wanted me to see her, thinking it was a marvelous thing, and truly it is.” — A letter from the Venetian ambassador in Naples FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: POPULAR FASCINATION
Thomas Schweiker, an armless man, writing with his feet (1609) “ God is remarkable in his works” (i.e., celebrates the infinite variety of God’s creations) FREAKS AND CRIPPLES: POSITIVE INTERPRETATION
Bearded Woman from Emblemas Morales (1610) “ Neither one nor the other . . . I am lowly like a horrid and rare monster, view me as wicked and an evil omen.” FREAKS: NEGATIVE, MORALIZING ASSOCIATIONS
Dwarves and cripples by Velazquez Catalogued in the royal collections under “ buffoons” Buffoon: “A useless thing, lacking in judgment and wisdom” Originally hung in the Torre de la Parada, the royal hunting lodge FREAKS: NEGATIVE, MORALIZING ASSOCIATIONS
FREAKS: NEGATIVE, MORALIZING ASSOCIATIONS Mockery: “ The dwarf has much that is monstrous. Therefore it is natural to wish to make of it a plaything of mockery like other monsters. These monsters, like all the others that are bred for curiosity, are for your pleasure: they are in point of fact a nauseating thing and abominable to any man of intelligence.” — Sebastian Covarrubias
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