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Las Meninas (Museo del Prado)

Las Meninas


Diego Velazquez is the brilliant author of Las Meninas, the most enigmatic composition of this Spanish artist.
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  •  1705 Visits
  •  08-02-2013
  •  20' 
  • Version : 8 
  •  Caesar 
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Introduction. The first question is the title: Las Meninas. It is a Portuguese word used to name the Maids of Honour of the Royal children in the 17th century. It is a 1656 painting by Diego Velázquez. The picture is a very enigmatic composition raises...

Infanta Margarita

Infanta Margarita. In the centre of the foreground stands the Infanta Margarita, she is the main character of the picture. In Spain the daughters of king are not called princesses but Infantas. Philip IV's first wife, Elizabeth of France, died in 1644...

The Meninas

The Meninas. The Infanta Margarita is attended by two ladies-in-waiting, or meninas: doña Isabel de Velasco, on right, who is poised to curtsy to the princess, and doña María Agustina Sarmiento de Sotomayor, on left, who kneels before Margarita, offering...

The Dwarfs

The Dwarfs. To the right of the Infanta are two dwarfs: a grotesquely misshapen female dwarf, the German Maria Barbola, and the Italian, Nicolas Pertusato, who playfully tries to rouse a sleeping dog, a mastiff, with his foot. In the court of Philip IV...

Doña Marcela and the priest

Doña Marcela and the priest. Behind them stands doña Marcela de Ulloa, the infanta's chaperone, dressed in mourning and talking to an unidentified bodyguard. The second character is in semidarkness, recently one study declares that the identity of this...

The artist

The artist. Velázquez portrays himself working at a large canvas. He looks outwards, beyond the pictorial space to where a viewer of the painting would stand. On his chest is the red cross of the Order of Santiago, which he did not receive until 1659,...

Background and the mirror

Background and the mirror. Las Meninas shows a large room in the Madrid palace of King Philip IV of Spain. There are some large pictures hanging on the back wall of the room. Two of them were painted by Velázquez's son-in-law, Mazo, from models by Rubens,...
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