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Last updated 2019-09-18
Interpretation of Las Meninas by Velazquez, by artist Russell Spencer
Las Meninas, 2018-06-11
By Russell Spencer after Velazquez
Acrylic on Canvas, 761 x 762 mm


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This is my first interpretation of Las Meninas, 1656, by Diego Velazquez, which holds pride of place in Madrid's wonderful Prado Museum, and is some people's nominee for best painting in the world. The setting is Velazquez' studio in the Escorial Palace in Madrid, and we view if from the position of the King and Queen, as they pose for their portrait. They are reflected in a mirror on the back wall. To entertain them while they pose their daughter is in attendance along with her retinue of maids, dwarves, a chaperone, a body guard, and a dog. An important courtier is silhouetted in the doorway. One of Velazquez' goals in life was to improve the social standing of painters in Spain, from that of craftsmen, to that of true artists. This painting marks a point where he undeniably has achieved that goal, at least for himself.