ALEJANDRO MARTÍNEZ PÉREZ
Drawings by Luis Paret y Alcázar (1746-1799)
Co-published by the Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica and the Biblioteca Nacional de España
352 pp, 333 colour illustrations
220 × 275 mm
Luis Paret y Alcázar (1746-1799) is one of the most interesting figures in 18th-century Spanish art. An erudite artist with an eventful biography, even today he occupies a displaced place in the theoretical discourse of his time owing to a slogan – the “Watteau espagnol” – which makes him the leading exponent of Rococo in our country and conditions our perception of his figure, limiting the true scope of his work. He is also noted as a painter who specialised in views of ports, vases and scenes of gallantry, but his training and culture reveal, however, that there is much more to his work. Some aesthetic judgments and historiographical criteria of the last century have recurrently contrasted his work with that of Francisco de Goya, seeking an opposition between Paret’s erudite disposition and the brilliant and innate talent of the Aragonese painter. This created the image of a “spontaneous and cheerful” artist who was influenced “too much” by French taste. The aim of this study is therefore to show, through an analysis of his artistic culture, that the Madrid-born artist was fully linked to the socio-historical context of his time and, through his drawings, to prove that his supposed heterodoxy is linked to the diversity of his artistic interests. This catalogue raisonné brings together a corpus of 165 drawings arranged in chronological order, providing an insight into Paret’s creative processes and the themes and motivations that inspired him throughout his career. Also included as appendices are the identification of the contents of the artist’s library, a list of autograph prints and another of works that have disappeared and are only known from engravings. This volume is also the catalogue of the exhibition of the same title held at the Biblioteca Nacional de España.
More information on the website of the Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica