Painting in Spain, 1500–1700
March 11, 1999
290 pages, 8 1/2 x 11
200 b/w + 100 color illus.
Focusing on the interaction between art and the socioeconomic and political conditions that prevailed in Spain’s golden age, this book offers information about religious beliefs, social attitudes, the activities of patrons and collectors, and how these were absorbed and interpreted by painters. The author sets the history of Spanish paintings within a European context and explores Spain’s contact with artistic centers in Italy and the Netherlands. He discusses not only Spanish artists but also such non-Spanish painters as Titian, Ruben, and Luca Giordano, who either worked in Spain or influenced other artists there. Brown also examines the collections of foreign paintings that Spanish noblemen and prelates assembled and how these collections affected the production of art and the social status of the Spanish artist. In this up-to-date and innovative analysis of two hundred years of Spanish painting, Brown describes a country that brilliantly transformed the artistic impulses it received from abroad to fit the needs of its own society.
"[A] meticulous and elaborately constructed study. . . . Brown’s pellucid evocations of individual paintings capture their stylistic essentials while reaching beyond to evoke their spiritual essences without belaboring iconographical specifics. . . . All art collections beyond the elementary will require this volume."—Library Journal
“[This book] is presented in an attractive, manageable format and is destined to be the major reference book on Spanish painting in English for a long time to come.”—Peter Cherry, Apollo Magazine
"An art history survey that is a pleasure to read might be considered a rare find, yet Jonathan Brown’s Painting in Spain is just that. . . . Brown’s narrative is one of artistic aspirations and inventions, royal taste and propaganda, and both ecclesiastical and secular greed and intrigue revealed through the lens of artistic patronage. All of this, along with lavish illustrations and useful notes and bibliography, serves the advancement of knowledge about this fruitful period of Spanish art history in a manner that remains readable and accessible."—Jesus Escobar, Bulletin of the Society of Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies
“Brown’s Painting in Spain, 1500-1700 is both a valuable handbook for the art historian and a clear, well organized introduction to the Golden Age of Spanish Painting. . . . Quite simply the best survey in English of this great period of Spanish painting.”—Suzanne L. Stratton-Pruitt, Renaissance Quarterly