“Saint Casilda”, Francisco de Surbaran – overview of the painting

“Saint Casilda”, Francisco de Surbaran – overview of the painting
"Saint Casilda", Francisco de Surbaran - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Francisco de Surbaran
  • Museum: Prado Museum
  • Year: Around 1635

Overview of the painting :

Saint Casilda – Francisco de Surbaran. Around 1635. Oil on canvas. 184×98

   On portraits of Surbaran, models illuminated from above are usually depicted in full growth, presented in calm poses clothed in clothes made of heavy fabrics. So with restrained, but expressive gestures, as if telling about their deeds, contrasting the raging internal passions read in their faces.

   Many images of the master are devoid of religiosity, as, for example, in the painting “Saint Casilda”. About her feat – a secret from her father, the Moorish ruler who professed Islam, helping captive Christians – resembles her decisive dark-skinned face with a tough, strict look. Otherwise, the portrait has a noble lady, proud, not devoid of grace, in an expensive, elegant dress. But the saint holds flowers in his hands – a symbol of miraculous salvation from the punishment of his father. Surbaran, a beautiful colorist, surprisingly accurately conveyed the brilliance of silk, pearls, and the airiness of the background. The artist used saturated dark green and purple tones.

   Despite the 15th century home-building structure in Spain, women’s self-awareness grew: among them came scientists, politicians, and conquistadors. The image of Casilda is typical among others, fanned by romance.