Museo Nacional del Prado visit with XcelTrip
The Prado National Museum in Madrid contains Flemish, Italian and Spanish art in its collection. To date, the museum has about 8,600 works, but because of the limited space can only show 2,000 paintings.
The museum was officially opened on November 19, 1819 by the founder Isabella Braganskaya, wife of King Ferdinand VII, but the history of the collection began much earlier. The first monarch who wished to preserve artistic values and pass on to inheritance was Charles V (1500–1558). Those days, the collection was available only to the nobility, and a small part on religious subjects of the general public. Later, in 1785, a place was set aside for a public museum in the large Prado Park, after which this museum was named.
Today, the collection has more than 8,000 paintings, but due to lack of space, only about 2,000 works are exhibited. In addition to the paintings, the collection includes more than 400 sculptures and numerous jewels.
The Prado Museum presents the largest collection of Spanish paintings in the world. You can begin to get acquainted with it from the 11th century — in front of you are fragments of Mozarabic frescoes from the church of San Baudelo de Berlanga. Further in the halls, where works from the Spanish-Flemish Gothic to the Renaissance are represented, you can see paintings by Bartolome Bermejo, Pedro Berruguete, Juan de Juanes and Luis de Morales. In the halls dedicated to the work of El Greco, are stored such masterpieces of artist as “Knight with a hand on his chest” and “Trinity ‘’.
The Golden Age is represented in paintings by Ribera, Zurbaran and Murillo, which preceded the work of Velasquez. The most famous masterpieces of this artist — “Menin” and “Pryaha” — can also be seen in the Prado halls. In the halls dedicated to Francisco Goya, who worked at the junction of the 18th and 19th centuries, his works are presented: from cardboards for tapestries created for the Royal Tapestry Manufactory, to “Gloomy Pictures”, which the artist painted on the walls of his “House of the Deaf”. Some rooms are devoted to painting of the XIX century. They can see pictures of Fortuny, father and son Madrazo, as well as Sorolla.
Italian painting is important for understanding the transition from medieval art to the Renaissance. In addition, she had a great influence on Spanish baroque. Among the paintings of the Quattrocento era (XV century), the “Annunciation” by Fra Angelico, the Bottaccia series “The Novel of Nastajo degli Onesti’’, the Assumption of the Virgin by Mantegna and the Dead Christ Supported by an Angel by Antonella la Messina deserve special attention. The heyday of classicism in the era of Cinquecento (XVI century) is represented by several maidens of Raphael, and paintings by Titian, Tintoretto and Veronese, the great artists of the Venetian school, are among the most valuable exhibits of the Prado Museum. The various directions of Italian Baroque are represented by works by Caravaggio, Guido.
The Prado collection has more than 8,000 paintings and 400 sculptures, they are exhibited alternately, the main part is stored in the vaults. To inspect all the art of one day is not enough, but you can start with the basic masterpieces. The path to them is indicated in the plan of the museum, which can be taken free of charge.
Among the most famous paintings are the Meninas by Velasquez, The Portrait of the Caballero and The Adoration of the Shepherds by El Greco, The Three Graces by Rubens, the Garden of Delights by Bosch.
The Prado presents the gloomy frescoes of the great Goya, painted by him on the walls of his house in Madrid at the time of mental disorders. The most depressive of them is Saturn. Also in the museum you can see the earlier works of the Master, for example, “Portrait of the Family of Charles IV.” A connoisseur of human weakness, Goya masterfully portrayed the true characters of the members of the royal family.
In the halls you should find a copy of the “Mona Lisa” by Leonardo da Vinci, made by his student. Unlike the famous original, the list does not convey the mysteriousness and depth of the image of Gioconda, but it is curious to look at it. In addition to painting, interesting sculptures, for example, the ancient Roman statue of Orestes and Pylada.
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