Martin Warnke


Form & Reform

176 pages

First day of sale: 13.01.2016
ISBN 978-3-8321-7642-6

Martin Warnke
Velázquez. Form und Reform
Velàzquez. Form and Reform

Compact and brilliant: a new view on Velázquez

Since Edouard Manet has seen in Velázquez‘ art of painting an anticipation of the impressionist point of view, a large audience admires the painter genius, who was able to put the visible down in the colour and form of his pictures. To open up a new view on the historical Velázquez is a difficult task. It means to respond not only to the sometimes into enthusiasm lapsing reflections but also to the entanglements of the modern art-historical guessing game, with the aim to finally enlighten the complex subjects in Velázquez‘ paintings.

Martin Warnke‘s detailed knowledge of sources and results of the research are the basis for this concentrated study, in which he describes the important stages in the life of the most remarkable Spanish painter. In a very compact language he gives a description of the major pieces and pays tribute to the painter’s works, always following up the question, which has been the starting point for this study: How was it possible, that an artist, who in his native town Sevilla had above all a reputation for being a street and kitchen artist, was called to the highly cultivated court of King Philipp IV. and spent the rest of his life there? The thesis is: In crisis-ridden Spain the court, in the course of reforms and austerity measures, had taken up a new ascetic image, which went very well with Velázquez’ realistic style. His art was of great significance for the educational planning, which the painter tried to meet with changing subjects and artistic means.

Rights sold to:
Spain (Centro de Estudios Europa Hispanica)