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Saint James the Great in the Battle of Clavijo

Artist: Carreño de Miranda, Juan
(Avilés, Asturias 1614 – 1685 Madrid)

Date: 1660
Medium: oil on canvas
Dimensions: 231 x 168 cm
Classification: paintings
Inventory Number: 5848
Department: Old Master Paintings

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+Description

Saint James the Great in the Battle of Clavijo

This theme so popular in Spanish art has already been tackled in connection with Tiepolo's work. This rendition painted by the Madrid court painter is about a century earlier. The saint, with his ghostly black mantle and blurred features, riding a rearing white horse, appears to be an apparition. While the two Saracens trampled on the ground are painted with certain plasticity, the figure of the apostle who has risen from the dead is made translucently ethereal by the application of the flowing, glazed paint. The horse's mane, the red belt, the flag and the white shroud are all details which swirl around weightlessly. The master obviously shows a debt to the colours and forms of the Flemish Rubens and Van Dyck.