Arts Everyday Living: The Genius of Spanish Art–A Dog, A Puppy, & A Palace

THE GENIUS OF SPANISH ART, PART III

MAN’S BEST FRIEND & COMPANION

Juan van der Hamen (1596-1631)* ranks, along with Velazquez, Murillo, Zurbaran, and other artists, as one of the luminaries of the Spanish Golden Age of arts. A specialist in bodegones or still life painting, he was likely Flemish nobleman Jean de Croy’s first choice to decorate his new palace in Madrid.  But was Van der Hamen surprised by his employer’s request to include his favorite pets amid the stunning flowers and expensive furnishings?

Once placed on either side of the entrance to De Croy’s picture gallery, Still Life with Flowers and a Dog and Still Life with a Puppy, are currently part of the Prado collection.  Immortalizing “man’s best friend,” from the dignified canine father, to his playful offspring, oblivious of the elegant surroundings.

Juan van der Hamen, Still Life with a Flower and Dog, c. 1625-1630, oil on canvas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

Juan van der Hamen, Still Life with a Flower and Dog, c. 1625-1630, oil on canvas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

 

Juan van der Hamen, Still Life with Puppy, c. 1625-1630, oil on canvas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

Juan van der Hamen, Still Life with Puppy, c. 1625-1630, oil on canvas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

COMING SUNDAY: VELAZQUEZ AND THE LITTLE PRINCESS

*Although born in Spain, Juan van der Hamen’s background was Flemish.

The above image is used solely for educational purposes.

Redecorate your home with Through an Artist’s Eyes: Learning to Live Creatively.

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