Nonell, between tradition and modernity: affinities and complicities /2

Francesc Quílez i Eduard Vallès The banality of everyday life The major iconographic groups linked to the human figure that provided the vehicle enabling Nonell to find artistic elevation are, basically, those that represent the margins of society. However, in truth, a considerable proportion of Nonell’s production depicts his nearest environment, the urban artisan classes….

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Author: Francesc Quílez

Nonell in context. Beauty from the margins

Francesc Quílez and Eduard Vallès The Museu Nacional has published a book about Isidre Nonell, entitled Nonell. Visions from the margins. The publication is the catalogue, turned into a book, of the exhibition that the Museu Nacional had planned to open in May 2020 and that could not be done, due to the COVID-19 pandemic….

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Author: Francesc Quílez

“Two Beggar Women”. The Museu Nacional’s Fortuny collection grows in importance with a new acquisition /2

Francesc Quílez I mentioned in part 1 that I would analyse some of the details associated with the process of creating this work. The aim is to resolve some of the unknown factors to do with the historical context in which it was made. To begin with, I can state that my first hunch, which…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

“Two Beggar Women”. The Museu Nacional’s Fortuny collection grows in importance with a new acquisition /1

Francesc Quílez On the verge of commemorating, next year, the hundredth anniversary of the acquisition of a workas emblematic as The Spanish Wedding, purchased through popular subscription, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya has recently enriched its collection of works by Marià Fortuny with a new acquisition that corroborates the close relationship that, throughout its…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

“Non Finito”. Fortuny and the paradox of the perfectionist /2

Francesc Quílez The Battle of Tetouan, an excessively uncomfortable commission The Battle of Tetouan remained abandoned, half-finished, and became one of the most emblematic images in the studio that Fortuny had turned into a house-museum in the city of Rome in order to house his collection. The object occupied, as a decorative frieze, a preferential…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

“Non Finito”. Fortuny and the paradox of the perfectionist /1

Francesc Quílez The fact that such a brilliant, decisive and efficient artist, as Marià Fortuny was (1838-1874), remains contradictory, due to his known facility to achieve fast and excellent results in any discipline; from time to time he would show an unexpected weakness that led him to a state of creative melancholy and he was…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

Scenes of creation: artists’ workshops /2

Francesc Quílez The artist’s workshop: a multi-faceted space Ending this digression and getting back to the connecting thread of my discourse, I wish to demonstrate how this phenomenon of versatility allows me to make different approaches, and to take a very detailed look at the various facets presented by the motif to which I am…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

Scenes of creation: artists’ workshops / 1

Francesc Quílez In the course of the nineteenth century, the traditional artist’s workplace was transformed into an interesting motif for the artistic practice of the period, acquiring a scenographic dimension that had hitherto been unexplored. The depiction of the workshop had in fact already been featured in some of the most outstanding creative episodes in…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

Fortuny’s Carmen Bastián: problems with its reception and interpretation

Fortuny’s Carmen Bastián

Francesc Quílez Only on very few occasions during his career as an artist did Fortuny develop the theme of the female nude. It is a genre towards which his attitude was always preventive and for which he felt no special predilection, except for two highly iconic productions that over time have become two of his…

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Author: Francesc Quílez

Art in times of uncertainty: some thoughts

Marinus van Reymerswaele, San Jerónimo en su celda, 1535. Real Acdemia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando

Francesc Quílez In a time of worry, such as we are currently experiencing, in which we are overcome with anxiety and on the horizon we see only the image of uncertainty and despair, humanity seeks answers, remedies to help it bear this heavy burden that weighs us down, limits us and prevents us from going…

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Author: Francesc Quílez