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Escutcheon of Charles V of Spain

Artist:
John Singer Sargent (American, Florence 1856–1925 London)
Date:
1912
Medium:
Watercolor and graphite on white wove paper
Dimensions:
12 x 18 in. (30.5 x 45.7 cm)
Classification:
Drawings
Credit Line:
Purchase, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1915
Accession Number:
15.142.11
Not on view
Sargent translates a monochromatic subject—a carved stone relief—into a dazzling study of saturated golden light on pale stone. The composition was thoroughly planned in a graphite underdrawing, which Sargent then obscured with his seemingly effortless, free application of pigment.
The escutcheon represents the heraldic insignia of Emperor Charles V of Spain. It is located on a fountain on the exterior fortification walls of the Alhambra in Granada, Spain, where Sargent painted in 1912.
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