Tag Archives: Diego Velazquez

humor in art: hurt idealism

It would seem that humour and style are inseparable. But humour itself is not-never was-mere jocularity. Humour is a way of feeling about life, and when humour is great it is almost never without one of its opposite moods- tenderness, … Continue reading

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cervantes: spanish fathers and sons

In what sense was Spain, in the years of Miguel de Cervantes Don Quixote a schizophrenic society? If we look closely, there is an answer… In Cervantes lifetime, Spain had two very different moods. They were the moods of two … Continue reading

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velazquez: the infanta

There is the portrait by Velazquez of the Infanta Margarita, small hands firm on the huge frothing and shimmering skirt of red and silver, the curls shining, the wide confident eyes incuriously fixed on their great delineator, the Hapsburg cheek … Continue reading

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velazquez: dwarfed by absolutism

Put them all in a row. The famous dwarfs, or bufones: Don Diego de Acedo, a court official and not a jester at all, who set up to be the painter’s cousin and a man of letters, a tiny creature … Continue reading

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soul of spanish painting: truth comes first

Spanish painting. All the qualities are found in one form or another: the extravagance, the earthiness, the harshness, the illusion and disillusion, the gay and grotesque. The themes are God and Man, nature getting a bare look in. And of … Continue reading

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collection with the public purse

Charles I was Britain’s most discerning and energetic royal patron, buying much art and encouraging many continental artists. With his ascension to the throne in 1625, it was a turning point in English connoisseurship. Charles had grown up under the … Continue reading

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brother’s keeper

The perspective of the bull depends on where one is situated. For ¬†Hemingway, bullfighting ¬†is a metaphor for the intricate but often pre-determined relationships between men and women replete with sacrificial qualities and doused with pagan animalism. From a more … Continue reading

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passion for painting

Isabelle Stuart Gardner’s palace of paintings…. Perhaps the most astonishing single aspect of Fenway Court today is the disparity between its present value and what it cost Mrs. Gardner. Morris Carter, her biographer said, said that what she paid was … Continue reading

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kitschy-goo

This is a great quote from art critic Donald Kuspit. Kuspit is something of a traditionalist; or rather looking for the old sense of spirituality and insight into human nature to be found in art, a kind of sane dignity … Continue reading

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children being cute

Children being cute as a metaphor for superficiality. The new image of the child being born in innocence and the painter to capture that ripe moment of angelic realm before the inevitable gradual tarnishing of the soul. It was a … Continue reading

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