He painted genre paintings. He would get people to pose. He was fascinated with what happened in the mirror or the picture frame or in the door post. This is also a common theme, that we see. Early in his career, he painted works typically Spanish. Bodegones, were still life painting mixed with a scene painting of taverns or kitchen scenes. He also painted portraits, religious and mythological works. He worked for a short while in a gallery in Seville. He was highly motivated to raise his socially status in life. Artist were looked down upon. He was employed as a court artist because of his teacher's contacts. Being granted court artist (1623) meant he would no longer be confined to painting religious and commissioned paintings. He had proved himself early as a portrait artist. He painted his first pintor del Rey in 1623. (Mallory)He had an innate ability to capture the personality of his subjects. His desire to improve both his artistic ability and his intellectual knowledge created contempt with his court colleagues but enabled him to study the royal collection of other paintings. He was free from private or religious commissions as he was only to work for the king. He was an admirer of Titian. Rubens had visited Spain and became a friend and teacher in Velazquez's earlier years.(Mallory) He made 2 trips to Italy which represented four years of his life. His love of Rome and the Italian Baroque is shown in his change of texture in his paintings. By 1651, he was using bright vibrant reds and golds. The appearance of texture of material appeared which was only visible in white tissue. His second trip he painted his famous de Juan de Pareja and Innocent X . When he finally returned to Spain in 1651, he brought several artists' paintings with him. In 1652, his role in the Royal Court change. As the " Aposentador ", he had to paint primarily portraits. He was already able to paint a true psychological portrayal of his subjects. His whole career was devoted to portraits. (Rousseau) In the last part of his life, he did not have the time to paint. His last work, Las Meninas, painted in 1656 represents an amalgam of his portrait painting and his use of genre painting. He painted the immediate truth and the conceptual truth (Mallory) In 1658, he granted knighthood by the King of Spain. He died in 1660. Analysis of Two Works: Kitchen Scene La Mulata Supper in Emmaus (1618) by Velazquez Seville Oil on canvas 15x118cm (Art Authority n.d.) Description : 2 themes which contradict each other. There is a religious theme in a window or picture frame and the Mulato in the Kitchen with the bodegone (genre) or still life. (Alfonsa) This technique was used by the Veymeer School but the two themes would illustrated with color. The elements of the work show contrasting values. Velazquez used tenebrist tone. The lighting was limited and color was differentiated with the use of browns. The spacing is cramped. This is one of his few paintings where you do not see the full face. The part of the face that you do see makes the viewer think that it is not a painting in the back of the canvas; but a window; as there is a shadow. The perception is all wrong. Her shadow is wrong in respect to the shadow of on the wall and the shadows of the
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Diego Velazquez: La Mulata & Juan de Pareja Biography: Diego Velazquez was born in 1599 in Seville and died in Madrid in 1699. He started as a simple apprentice; became a court artist; and was promoted to the head artist for Philip IV of Spain. As he was the head artist he had diplomatic privileges and traveled often to Rome and other European cities…
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