In 2014 the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien (KHM) is showing the first exhibition in the German-speaking world to be dedicated to the famous artist, whose services were once retained by the Casa de Austria. The exhibition looks at Velázquez’s rich and exceptional artistic creativity, presenting his mythological and religious works, still lifes, landscapes and studies of animals alongside some of his more famous portraits.
Thanks to close family and political ties between the Habsburg ruling houses in Vienna and Madrid in the seventeenth century, the KHM Portrait Gallery owns an important collection of excellent portraits painted by Velázquez, who was the official court portrait artist under Spain’s King Philip IV. His likenesses of Maria Teresa and the young Prince Felipe Prospero, and his enchanting Infanta Margarita Teresa series brought him worldwide recognition. These portraits which capture her as a three, five and eight year old were painted as a dowry gift for her future husband from the House of Habsburg.
Loans from the National Gallery, London and the Museo del Prado Madrid, among other institutions, give a broader insight into Diego Velázquez’s unique oeuvre. While the artist himself concentrated on paintings for the imperial picture gallery in Madrid, he also studied works by other painters during his travels to Italy.
Oct 28, 2014-Feb 15, 2015
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Vienna