Paintings

Description of the painting by Diego Velazquez “Portrait of Count Olivares”


Velazquez's range of interests was surprisingly wide: genre scenes, historical and religious themes, mythological subjects. The artist tried all painting styles until he settled on portraits. In the manner of writing in the early period, the influence of Caravaggio is clearly visible. However, pretty quickly the artist crystallized his own style, well recognized by connoisseurs. But the ability to discern the greed and human vices behind the external greatness remained.

A sense of harmony, subtlety and richness of color are inherent in any of the master’s paintings. Deep penetration into the character of the model, hidden desires and carefully hidden weaknesses allowed the artist to create canvases stunning in their truthfulness.

The artist performed what he was striving for - he filled the circuits of ceremonial portraits with life. For a long time, working at the court of Philip IV, the master became famous and many nobles sought to order a portrait for him, so there was no shortage of models.

In the portrait of Count Olivares, the artist fully embodied his aspirations - he breathed life into the faces of ceremonial portraits. The count is depicted in deliberately modest clothing - black with a white collar. Against a dark background, with dark hair and a beard, he could dissolve. But this was not allowed by a puffy face and strikingly lively eyes. They hide the steel shine of a prudent politician.

A calm facial expression cannot hide the dictator's manners. The portrait was painted at the peak of the glory and influence of Olivares, but the artist managed to reveal the inner essence and show the hidden vices of the nobleman.





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Watch the video: Diego Velázquez: The Early Court Portraits (September 2020).