The Meadows Museum, Southern Methodist University, presents for the first time to an international audience the masterpieces of the main private artistic collection existing in Spain. It is about the treasures of the House of Alba, extraordinary fruit of more than five hundred years of European and Spanish collecting and patronage.
This book explains not only the history of the Alba and Berwick families from the 15th to the 21st centuries, but also offers a detailed account of their collection of paintings, sculptures, furniture, tapestries and all kinds of objects, as well as their archive and library. The works of artists such as Fra Angelico, Diego Velázquez, Francisco de Goya, Tiziano, Mengs, Ingres, Sorolla, Renoir or Fantin-Latour, which are studied here, are proof of the importance of this collection. All this without forgetting the relations of the collection with the American world in the form of decorative objects, tapestries and a section of the Christopher Columbus documents preserved in the family library.
This publication includes the special interest of this lineage for the collection of tapestries, the patronage exercised over literati such as Garcilaso de la Vega, the significance in the collection of the Empress Eugenia de Montijo, related directly to the Berwick-Alba family, or the of the last dukes of the twentieth century, interested in the art of his time.
The palaces of Liria (Madrid), Monterrey (Salamanca) and Dueñas (Seville) are the depositories of these riches. A study of each of them also enriches this publication.
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