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Arciniega [Arziniega], Claudio de  

François-Auguste de Montêquin

(b Burgos, 1526–7; d Mexico City, 1593).

Mexican architect and sculptor of Spanish birth. In 1541 he moved from his native city to Madrid, where he served as an apprentice to Luis de Vega, one of the architects working in the High Renaissance style for Emperor Charles V. Arciniega worked with Vega in the remodelling of the Alcázar at Madrid. At intervals between 1542 and 1548 he worked under the direction of Rodrigo Gil de Hontañón as a sculptor on the Plateresque façade of the university at Alcalá de Henares. He was possibly also responsible for the main retable in the church of Santiago at Guadalajara.

In 1554 Arciniega arrived in New Spain (now Mexico) with his brother Luis de Arciniega (1537–99), who was also an architect. He settled in Puebla de los Angeles (now Puebla) and worked there between 1554 and 1558, primarily engaged in a large number of public works as master mason. He established his reputation with the fountain that he constructed (...


Becerra, Francisco  

Ramón Gutiérrez

(b Herguijuela, Extremadura, 1545; d 1605).

Spanish architect, active in South America. Both his father, Alonso (d ?1570), and his grandfather, Domingo, were architects; the latter was the Maestro Mayor of Toledo Cathedral (completed 1493). Francisco was considered one of the finest architects in Extremadura, where he was active on a wide range of schemes including the church of S Maria and the chapel of S Isabel (both Trujillo), patrician houses in Guevara, and a chapel between the cloisters in Guadalupe Monastery. In 1573 he left for America, one of the few architects permitted to do so by the Spanish government, which restricted the emigration of qualified personnel. The fact that Becerra was immediately associated with works of magnitude confirms his importance. In 1575 he became the Maestro Mayor of Puebla Cathedral in Mexico, assisted by Francisco Gutiérrez Cabello. By his own account his activity on this assignment lasted for five years and probably included the design and laying of the foundations; however, the plan was amended after ...


Bitti, Bernardo  

Annick Benavides

[Bitti, Aloisio Bernardino Giovanni Demócrito]

(b Camerino, the Marches, 1548; d Lima, 1610).

Italian painter and sculptor active in Peru. One of seven children born to Pablo and Cornelia Bitti, Bernardo Bitti commenced formal training in the arts at the age of 14 in Camerino and completed his training in Rome. He was inducted into the Society of Jesus as a Coadjutor Brother on 2 May 1568 at the age of 20. The General of the Society of Jesus, Everardo Mecurián, assigned Bitti to the Viceroyalty of Peru in 1573 at the request of the Jesuit Provincial in Peru, Diego Bracamante, who believed religious imagery would facilitate the Catholic indoctrination of indigenous Andeans at missions. After spending 14 months in Seville, Bitti arrived in Lima on 31 May 1575 and worked there for 8 years. He subsequently embarked on a peripatetic career decorating the interiors of Jesuit sites in Cuzco, Juli, La Paz, Sucre, Potosí, Arequipa, and Ayacucho.

Bitti created the main and lateral altarpieces of the Jesuit provisional church of S Pedro in Lima with the assistance of the Andalusian Jesuit artist Pedro de Vargas (...


Concha, Andrés de la  

Maria Concepción García Sáiz

revised by Alessia Frassani

(fl. 1568–1612; d Mexico, 1612).

Spanish painter and architect, active in New Spain (Mexico). In 1568, he went from Spain to Mexico, possibly because he was commissioned to paint the principal retable of the church of Yanhuitlan, Oaxaca State, with the Annunciation, the Adoration of the Shepherds, the Adoration of the Magi, the Presentation in the Temple, the Descent from the Cross, the Resurrection, the Ascension, Pentecost, the Last Judgement, the Immaculate Conception, St. Jerome, Mary Magdalene, St. Luke, and St. Dominic (1575–1579). These retablo paintings reflect his style as a Mannerist painter of the Seville school, particularly that of Luis de Vargas.

Between 1570 and 1575, Andrés de la Concha worked in Oaxaca city’s cathedral. In 1580–1581 he collaborated with Simón Pereyns on the retable (destr., paintings untraced) of the high altar in the monastery of Teposcolula, Oaxaca State; and in this period he also worked in the church of Coixtlahuaca, Oaxaca State, on paintings for the retable, of which eleven panels survive: three dedicated to the ...


Juarez family  

Maria Concepción García Sáiz


Mexican family of painters. Luis Juarez (b c. 1585; d Mexico City, c. 1638) painted in the Mannerist style of the Spanish painters settled in Mexico, such as Baltasar de Echave Orio and Alonso Vázquez, although his figures are softer than those of his teachers. He began working in the first decade of the 17th century. His signed St Teresa (Guadalajara, Mus. Guadalajara) dates from that time and his St Anthony of Padua and the Ascension (both Querétaro, Mus. Reg.) from 1610. In 1611 he was commissioned to make the triumphal arch for the reception of the Viceroy of New Spain, Fray García Guerra. During the 1620s he painted the retables in the church of Jesús María, Mexico City, and in S Agustín, Puebla. The finest of his numerous religious works are the Annunciation, the Agony in the Garden, the Visitation, the Archangel Michael, and St Raphael (all Mexico City, Pin. Virreinal); the ...


Lunar, Emerio  

María Antonia González-Arnal

(Darío )

(b Cabimas, Jan 27, 1940; d Cabimas, Nov 22, 1990).

Venezuelan painter. He was self-taught and is best known for his depiction of female figures and his architectural landscapes, which showed his appreciation of Renaissance art. Characteristic of his painting was the portrayal of solitary figures in a posed, wild-eyed attitude, enveloped in unreal surroundings and in wide spaces containing solid architectural structures, as in ...


Martínez de Arrona, Juan  

W. Iain Mackay

(b Vergara, 1562; d Lima, 1635).

Spanish architect and sculptor active in Peru. He was trained as a sculptor by Cristóbal Velázquez (d 1616), a Mannerist of the school of Alonso Berruguete. He arrived in Lima c. 1599 and carved the life-sized reliefs of Christ and the Apostolate (1608) in cedar above the chests in the sacristy of the cathedral. They are imposing but do not strive for realism, betraying the influence of the Antique, particularly in the disposition and layout of the channelled folds and drapery and through references to Renaissance classicism. In 1614 he was appointed Maestro Mayor of Lima Cathedral, a post which he retained until his death. He is also known to have worked on the stone façade of S Lázaro. Following the earthquakes of 1606 and 1609, various architects were consulted on how to re-roof the cathedral. Wooden vaults were rejected, and Martínez de Arrona proposed Gothic ribbed vaults, executed in brick. This proposal was followed, and the church was completed by ...


Medoro, Angelino  

Maria Concepción García Sáiz

(b Italy, c. 1567; d Spain, c. 1631).

Italian painter and draughtsman, active in South America. After a brief stay in Seville, he arrived in South America in 1587, working particularly in Tunja and Bogotá (Colombia), Quito (Ecuador), and Lima (Peru). He returned to Spain some time after 1624. Medoro worked in the Mannerist style of Vasari and Francesco Salviati, and he was an important influence on the developing South American schools. His known work comprises a series dedicated to the Passion in the chapel of los Mancipe, Tunja Cathedral, a Virgin of Antigua in the Dominican church, and a Flagellation in the Franciscan monastery, both in Tunja. Other works include a Virgin of the Rosary (with four saints) in the convent of S Clara, Quito; St Bonaventura and the Entry into Jerusalem in the monastery of S Francisco, Lima; two paintings of the Crucifixion, one of St Diego of Alcalá, and one of St Anthony of Padua...


Pereyns [Pereins], Simón  

Cristina Cruz González

(b Antwerp, c. 1540; d Puebla, Mexico, 1589).

Flemish painter, active in Spain and Mexico. After a short stay in Portugal around 1558, he moved to Spain, living in Toledo and Madrid until 1566 when he went to Mexico as part of the retinue of the Viceroy, Gastón de Peralta, Marqués de Falces. He was one of the most important 16th-century European artists to arrive in New Spain. Pereyns used models from his native Antwerp and painted in a late Mannerist style encouraged by Romanism, a Flemish understanding of Michelangelo and Raphael often consisting of mythological themes. He was influenced by his contact with Spanish painters who had spent time in Rome, such as Gaspar Becerra and Juan Fernández de Navarrete. His figures have smooth flesh tones and are classicizing and bold, yet his work executed in Mexico is exclusively religious. He had a twenty-three-year career in Mexico, producing elaborate altar screens for Franciscan churches in Mixquic (...


Pérez de Alesio, Mateo  

Teresa Gisbert

[Lecce, Matteo da ]

(b Alesio, c. 1545–50; d Lima, ?1616).

Italian painter. He is documented in Rome from 1568, where he worked with Federico Zuccaro. His works include frescoes in the Villa d’Este in Tivoli and the Villa Mondragone in Frascati. He also painted an altarpiece for S Caterina della Rota in Rome. His most important work is the fresco depicting the Dispute over the Body of Moses that he painted c. 1574 in the Sistine Chapel (Rome, Vatican) replacing a fresco by Luca Signorelli. He belonged to the Accademia di S Luca. His frescoes in the oratory of S Lucia del Gonfalone in Rome were executed in c. 1575. In 1576 he travelled to Malta to paint the 13 frescoes (in situ) in the main hall of the Palace of the Grand Masters, Valletta. About 1582 he returned to Rome, where he executed frescoes in the apse of S Eligio degli Orefici. He then went to Seville, where he came into contact with Francisco Pacheco and his circle and became known as painter to the Pope and a disciple of Michelangelo. He was commissioned to paint the ...


Revilla, Carlos  

Luis Enrique Tord

(b Arequipa, Aug 19, 1940).

Peruvian painter and printmaker. He studied in the Netherlands and produced fantastic Surrealist-influenced pictures, in which he made reference to Flemish and Italian painting of the Renaissance. In a number of his dreamlike paintings figures appear to have emerged from a great box of robot toys, contributing to the painting’s disconcertingly cold atmosphere....


Vasconcelos, Constantino de  

Humberto Rodríguez-Camilloni

(b Braga; d Lima, Aug 22, 1668).

Portuguese architect and engineer, active in Peru. He was educated in the Renaissance humanist tradition, studying philosophy, theology, mathematics, cosmography, perspective, and architecture after Vitruvius. Vasconcelos went to the Spanish Viceroyalty of Peru in 1629 with Don Hernando de Vera y Zúñiga, Archbishop of Santo Domingo, who had been transferred to a new seat in Cuzco. To celebrate the arrival of the new archbishop, in 1630 Vasconcelos designed a gold medal, which was sent to Spain. He then worked as an engineer in mines at Oruro, Potosí, and Huancavelica. Vasconcelos took part as a cosmographer and military engineer in the 1645 expedition to Valdivia in Chile, where he drew a topographical map of the port and a design for its fortifications. His architectural masterpiece was the church of S Francisco (1657–74), Lima, largely built under the supervision of his assistant Manuel de Escobar (1639–93). Here Vasconcelos employed the ...


Vázquez, Alonso  

(b Ronda, c. 1565; d Mexico City, c. 1608).

Spanish painter. He probably trained either with Luis de Vargas or with his pupil Antonio de Arjián in Seville, where Vázquez worked from 1588 until his departure for New Spain in 1603. Influenced by the work of northern Renaissance masters such as Marten de Vos and Maarten van Heemskerck, Vázquez’s art is a good example of late 16th-century Mannerism in Seville. The sculpturesque quality of his forms, interest in detail and taste for exaggerated gestures and contorted poses reflect both Italian and Flemish influences. Vázquez earned a reputation for his virtuoso treatment of still-lifes in his paintings, as in Lazarus and the Rich Man (1588–1603; untraced, see Brown, p. 131), painted for Fernando Enríquez de Ribera, 3rd Duque de Alcalá. The Last Supper (1588–1603; Seville, Mus. B.A.) combines Flemish motifs taken from prints by or after van Heemskerck and de Vos. The theatrical composition contains still-life objects depicted with great care and attention to detail. Vázquez’s earliest dated work, the ...