Ayala [Aiala] (e Cabrera), Josefa de [Óbidos, Josefa d’]
- Vitor Serrão
[Óbidos, Josefa d’]
(b Seville, c. 1630; d Óbidos, July 22, 1684).
Portuguese painter and engraver. She was the daughter of the Portuguese painter Baltazar Gomes Figueira (1597–1674) and a Spanish lady, Doña Catarina de Ayala y Cabrera. After the restoration of the Portuguese monarchy in 1640 the family moved to Coimbra. Here Josefa began her apprenticeship under her father, a painter of landscapes, still-lifes and religious works, who in 1644 painted the retable of Nossa Senhora da Graça, Coimbra, in the naturalist-tenebrist style he had learnt in Seville in the circles of Juan del Castillo, Juan de Roelas and Francisco de Zurbarán.
Josefa’s first known work is an engraving of St Catharine (1646; Lisbon, Mateus José de Arriaga Xavier da Costa priv. col., see 1984 exh. cat., pl. 1). In 1647 she painted on copper the Mystic Marriage of St Catharine (Lisbon, Mus. N.A. Ant.), which, despite the artificial lighting, dainty figures and the almost obsessive piety, shows her promise as a painter in oils. The fine painting on copper of ...