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Painting of 'María Cayetana de Silva, 13th Duchess of Alba' by Goya, on cover of 'Treasures from the House of Alba', by Ediciones El Viso.

Treasures from the House of Alba

By (author) Fernando Checa


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  • The treasures of the Alba family represent more than five hundred years of patronage and collecting of European art of the highest quality and importance
  • Accompanies a 2016 exhibition at the Meadows Museum (Dallas) and in The Frist Center for the Visual Arts (Tennessee)
Full Description

The Meadows Museum at Southern Methodist University is honoured to offer viewers in the United States their first opportunity to contemplate masterpieces from the leading historic private art collection in Spain. The treasures of the Alba family represent more than five hundred years of patronage and collecting of European art of the highest quality and importance. One hundred thirty-eight exemplary objects from these vast holdings will be presented in Dallas and then travel to the Frist Center for the Visual Arts in Nashville. Coinciding with the Meadows Museum s golden anniversary, the exhibition Treasures from the House of Alba: 500 Years of Art and Collecting and this companion publication trace the history of the Alba family from the fifteenth century through the present day through the works they collected. The book explores the family’s wealth of paintings, sculptures, furniture, tapestries, and other objects, as well as the Alba archives and library. The stature of the painting collection is clear from the artists represented in the exhibition, among them Fra Angelico, Titian, Rubens, Mengs, Goya, Ingres, Sorolla, and Renoir. The relationship of the Alba legacy to America is highlighted in decorative objects and in a selection of documents from the Alba library related to Columbus and his voyages. The ten essays in this publication shed light on the dynasty’s particular interest in collecting tapestries; its patronage of writers such as Garcilaso de la Vega; the influence of Eugenia de Montijo, empress of France, who was directly related to the Alba family; the pivotal roles of the Seventeenth Duke of Alba and his daughter, the Eighteenth Duchess, in the twentieth century, both of them keenly engaged with the art of their time; and the three palaces Liria, Monterrey, and Las Dueñas that house much of the collection today. Finally, there is one essay covering the biographical life of the Albas as well as an article that discusses their artistic legacy. As a result, the book provides an in-depth study of the rich life and cultural achievements of this legendary dynasty that still lives strong today.

Ediciones El Viso
31st May 2016
290 mm x 290 mm
360 Pages
205 color, b&w
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