Juan de Valdés Leal Spanish

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 624

Paintings such as this one by the prominent Sevillian artist Valdés Leal were heavily influenced by the Spanish tradition of large-scale, theatrical sculptures, particularly the pasos—carved and painted ensembles of religious figures typically in intense states of emotion that were paraded through the streets before Easter Sunday. The gruesome details of Christ’s suffering, an especially Spanish phenomenon in painting and sculpture, were intended to heighten spiritual fervor.

Pietà, Juan de Valdés Leal (Spanish, Seville 1622–1690 Seville), Oil on canvas

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