Juan del Castillo (Seville 1590 - 1657) and Workshop The Appearance of the Virgin and Christ to Saint Francis of Assisi

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Lot 82
Juan del Castillo (Seville 1590 - 1657) and Workshop
The Appearance of the Virgin and Christ to Saint Francis of Assisi

£ 30,000 - 50,000
US$ 40,000 - 67,000
Juan del Castillo (Seville 1590 - 1657) and Workshop
The Appearance of the Virgin and Christ to Saint Francis of Assisi with two donors
oil on canvas
193.5 x 140.7cm (76 3/16 x 55 3/8in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    Private Spanish Collection

    LITERATURE:
    Enrique Valdivieso, Pintura Barroca Sevillana (Seville, 2003), p. 74, fig. 72 (as Juan del Castillo and workshop)

    Juan del Castillo's life and work have been deeply studied by Enrique Valdivieso and Juan Miguel Serrera. He is documented in Seville regularly from 1611 until 1639, after which there is no further record of him but for a document of 1650 mentioning him again in Seville, and he may have spent most of his later years working in Granada and Cadiz, as is stated by Antonio Palomino.

    Palomino, in his biography of Spanish artists, said of Juan del Castillo: 'He executed some excellent works in that city [Seville], which brought him such a great fame that his house was the most frequented school among those who wanted to gain proficiency in the art of painting. He was thus the teacher of the Prebendary Alonso Cano, of Bartolomé Murillo and of Pedro de Moya.' Although the reference to Cano as a pupil is mistaken, he was certainly a close friend and frequent collaborator. Even more significant for the development of painting in Seville was Juan del Castillo's relationship with Murillo, whom Palomino also described as his nephew. It is generally accepted (despite a lack of documentary evidence) that Murillo served an apprenticeship with Juan del Castillo, probably for the full term of six years, since his earliest known works display a close dependence on the older painter's style.

    Juan del Castillo's associations with Cano and Murillo both fell within the 1630s, the decade of the artist's greatest success, in the middle years of which he was working on what is generally regarded as his masterpiece, the retable of the Colegio de Santa María de Monte Sión in Seville, seven canvases from which have survived and are now in the Museo de Bellas Artes there (Valdivieso and Serrera, op. cit., pp. 308 and 336-341, and pls. 221-233).

    We are grateful to Enrique Valdevieso for his kind assistance in cataloguing this lot. He notes in particular the importance of the present painting as the only known depiction of portraiture in the artist's work. As such Valdevieso has often drawn on this particular painting in his lectures as an early example of a work of art that displays both religious and secular elements.
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