Francisco Pradilla y Ortiz
Francisco Pradilla Ortiz was born in Villanueva de Gállego, near Saragossa, on 24 July, 1848. He commenced his artistic studies in Saragossa with the painter and stage designer Mariano Pescador, while also attending classes in the San Luis Royal Academy of Fine Arts in that city. He left for Madrid at the beginning of 1866, where he studied under the painters Federico de Madrazo and Carlos Luis de Ribera, and the sculptor Ponciano Ponzano, in the Upper School of Painting and Sculpture at the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts. He also attended classes with the Water Colour Group in Madrid, learning the pictorial style that would so mark his artistic career. He was also a frequent visitor to the Prado Museum, where he engaged in doing copies of many of the paintings there. He also collaborated with the set designers Augusto Ferri and Jorge Bussato, who offered him work at their workshops.
Queen Joanna (Joan) the Mad
Oil on canvas
Museo del Prado, Madrid
The last work of his residency was his famous painting of Juana the Mad (Prado Museum, Casón del Buen Retiro) which was exhibited in the National Fine Arts Show in 1878, held in Granada's Cartuja de Miraflores, accompanying the coffin of Felipe the Fair. This painting earned a still quite young Pradilla the Medal of Honour at the event, as well as other honours such as that of the Paris World Fair in the same year.
Watercolour and pencil
From ARC at artrenewal.org
Ortiz Jose Benlliure La salida de misa en Rocafort
Pradilla did several representations of Juana la Loca (Joanna, or Joan the Mad). The insane Castilian princess was a common model for paintings at this time. Her insanity moved her to undertake this journey from Burgos to Granada where she wished to bury her husband. Her story contains characteristics of unrequited love, obsessive jealousy, and undying fidelity. Joanna or Juana I de Castilla (November 6, 1479 – April 12, 1555), called Joanna (or Joan) the Mad (Juana La Loca), was Queen regnant of Castile and mother of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V. She was the second daughter of Ferdinand II of Aragon, and Isabella of Castile, and was born at Toledo.
A successful painter, Pradilla received a number of commissions at the time, highlighted by portraits of Alfonso I the Battler and Alfonso V the Magnanimous for the Saragossa City Hall, as well as the monumental painting, "The Surrender of Granada", done between 1879 and 1882 for the Senate Palace. This last work fully established Pradilla's artistic reputation as a historical painter.
The Surrender of Granada
The Surrender of Granada
The defeat of the Moors in 1492 and the expulsion of the Moriscos from 17th-century Spain has become a politically sensitive subject. On September 22, 1609, the regime of Spain’s King Philip III launched the expulsion of the country’s 300,000 Moriscos. The first expulsion orders gave the Moriscos of the eastern region of Valencia three days to get to the nearest port, with no luggage other than what they could carry, after which delay they faced reprisals including death. Muslims known as Moors ruled parts of the Iberian Peninsula from the 8th to the 15th century.
Contrary to popular belief, most of the Muslim conquerors and settlers were not Arabs, but North African Berbers (Amazigh), and many Spaniards of indigenous origin also converted to Islam.
The weakening and divisions among Spain’s Moorish kingdoms facilitated the Christian reconquest of the country, which was completed with the defeat of Granada to Catholic monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella in 1492.
The expulsion of the Moriscos from Spain, which lasted from 1609 to 1614, was one of the biggest in the country’s history, concerning about 4 per cent of the then population. The exodus took place in brutal conditions, with up to 12,000 people dying in the process. Most of the Moriscos were shipped to North Africa, where they created wealth and contributed to the culture of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. Some even crossed the Sahara to Mali or Benin. Others left Spain for France in order to travel on to Istanbul, while some went as far as Latin America.
Hortensías en la ría de Vigo
Últimas nieves en Terracina
Procesión de Santiago apóstol
Carnaval en Roma
Upon the conclusion of his stay in Rome, the artist was named Director of the Spanish Academy of Fine Arts in Rome, a position he held from September 1881 until April of 1882. After resigning that post, he remained in the Eternal City until 1897, devoted to his painting..
He returned to Madrid shortly before the end of January, 1897, after being named Director of the Prado Museum. He held that post until August, 1898, when he resigned in order to dedicate himself totally to painting in a large studio at his neo-Arab home along the Paseo de Rosales. Pradillo had obtained this mansion, in which he would pass away on 1 November, 1921, shortly after his arrival in Madrid.
Source repro from art book
Venta del pescado en la playa de Vigo, 1916