Art Exhibition: “Power & Piety: Spanish Colonial Art”

On Display: Saturday, March 19, 2016 to Sunday, April 17, 2016

The exhibition is drawn from the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros and is co-organized by the Museum of Biblical Art, New York and Art Services International, Alexandria, Virginia.

The Esther B. O’Keeffe Gallery is open Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. Gallery admission is $5; no charge for Four Arts members and children 14 and younger.

Exhibition catalogs will be available for purchase at the gallery reception desk.

A remarkable collection of Spanish Colonial Art will make its exhibition debut at The Society of the Four Arts. “Power & Piety” includes more than 50 paintings, pieces of furniture, gold and silverwork from the Americas in the late 17th to the 19th century, when vast profits from cattle ranching and farming turned Spanish Americans in the Caribbean basin into some of the wealthiest people in the New World. The production and trade of religious art during this period was centered on high-end pieces for churches, the local nobility and wealthy individuals; their fine craftsmanship rivaled that of luxury goods imported from Europe. Concurrently more affordable – and less refined – artworks were produced in large numbers for the homes of people of lesser means.

Through exquisite paintings, sculpture, silver pieces, furniture, and other decorative devotional objects, this exhibition showcases a wide range of artistic production and the finesse of local masters. They benefited from a vast supply of raw materials that included not only precious metals such as gold and silver, but also rare wood varieties with colors and grains of unmatched richness, and unique local pigments. The exhibit offers an exceptional opportunity to learn more about the daily life and religious practices of colonial Latin America and sheds light on the nature of commercial exchange in the region.

Juan Pedro López (1724–1787) “Our Lady of Light” ca. 1765, Oil on canvas, 97 1/4 x 68 in. Courtesy of the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
Juan Pedro López (1724–1787)
“Our Lady of Light” ca. 1765, Oil on canvas, 76 x 52 in. Courtesy of the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros

Related Events

Jorge F. Rivas Pérez

Illustrated Lecture, “Religious Art in the Spanish Caribbean,” with Jorge F. Rivas Pérez
the Frederick & Jan Mayer Curator of Spanish Colonial Art at the Denver Art Museum
11:00AM – 12:00PM, Saturday, March 26, 2016
Walter S. Gubelmann Auditorium
No charge for lecture admission
Click here for more details

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