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The Holy Spirit surrounded by angels in Glory with Saint John the Evangelist, king Solomon and a tro [...]

The Holy Spirit surrounded by angels in Glory with Saint John the Evangelist, king Solomon and a trompe l´oeil altarpiece with the Immaculate Conception

Technical details

  • Author Francisco Bayeu y Subías
  • Title The Holy Spirit surrounded by angels in Glory with Saint John the Evangelist, king Solomon and a trompe l´oeil altarpiece with the Immaculate Conception
  • Timeline 1790
  • Technique Oil on canvas

Description

This exceptional work by Francisco Bayeu, painted in 1790, is a preparatory study or "modello" of the fresco decoration designed for the second room in the King's Oratory of the Royal Palace of Aranjuez. A complex iconographic programme is represented, in which the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary without original sin is exalted. In an outpouring of Glory, the Holy Spirit appears above, surrounded by angels, depicted with daring foreshortening, some bearing hieroglyphics and symbols from the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, dedicated to the Immaculate Conception. At the bottom, to the right, is an allegory of the Spanish monarchy in the form of a crowned lion bearing a sceptre resting on two globes, representing Europe and the Americas. The significance of this is the close association between the Spanish Crown and the Immaculate Conception, as King Charles III had placed the Spanish monarchy under her protection and had created the Royal Order of Charles III in 1771 dedicated to her. This study is splendid owing to its exquisite and extremely light style of execution, which is full of subtle gradations and lighting effects still expressing Rococo sensibility, conferring the image with the sensation of the supernatural nature of the subject.

Location in the museum

You may find this artwork on  Floor 2 Goya Hall

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