A new order, new art
With the fall of the Nasrid kingdom, Granada came under the influence of Western Christian art. The new political, social and religious order needed images and symbols to identify it. To satisfy these needs, the new inhabitants had to resort to importing foreign works of art and artists. Some of these artists settled in Granada permanently and laid the foundations from which the first genuinely Granada artists of the following generation would emerge.
The first Hall covers the end of the 15th century to the first half of the 17th century, featuring a rich variety of styles that tell their own history of the city. Imported works such as the Tríptico del Gran Capitán (Tryptich of the Great Captain) and several Spanish-Flemish paintings hang alongside works by foreign artists such as Francisco Chacón, Ruperto Alemán, Jacobo Florentino, Diego de Silóe, Juan de Aragón, Juan de Orea and Francisco Sánchez - part of whose choir stalls at Santa Cruz la Real have been recovered-, Pedro de Raxis, Sánchez Cotán and Vicente Carducho. Of special importance is Jacobo Florentino's spectacular sculptural group of the Holy Burial from the Monastery of San Jerónimo el Real in polychrome, gilded wood.
Alonso Cano, painter and sculptor
This hall is dedicated exclusively to Alonso Cano (1601-1667), the preeminently Granada artist, as well as a contemporary and friend of Velázquez and many other famous personalities of his time. His art is characterised by flawless drawing and a serene, monumental elegance.
The disciples of Alonso Cano
Alonso Cano's strong influence left a distinct mark, the "canesco" , on the entire development of Granada painting in the second half of the 17th century. His most faithful disciples are represented in this Hall: Pedro Atanasio Bocanegra, Juan de Sevilla, Pedro de Mean and José de Mora, plus other lesser known artists, such as Pedro de Moya and Felipe Gómez de Valencia. The cycle closes with works by José Risueño, another painter and sculptor, the last notable exponent of the "canesco" style, and who leads us into the 18th century.
Secular painting of the 17th century
Secular painting, although less frequent in Spain at the time than religiously themed painting, was widely appreciated in court circles. This thematic digression offers a brief moment to reflect on another area of painting. Here, a wide variety of themes is presented: allegory, landscape, portrait, genre painting and, of course, still life.
The 19th century
The 18th century was the least interesting era for art in Granada. It began its recovery in the second half of the 19th century with several interesting figures such as Manuel Gómez-Moreno González. In their works, other local artists such as José Garrocha, Juan Bautista de Guzmán andr Ruiz de Almodóvar illustrate the middle-class preferences for different subject areas such as portrait, landscape or genre scenes, which were more suited to decorating the home.
Granada as a theme
In line with other Andalusian cities, Granada held an enormous attraction for many artists and writers, who, in the wake of the accounts of the Romantic travellers, nurtured the myth created around Granada and its past. This factor endowed the city with a new period of glory. This space is therefore dedicated exclusively to works which have Granada as a theme. It covers the most prolific period, starting with the arrival of the Romantic travellers, around 1830, and ending a century later.
Resurgence in the 20th century
The artists born in the last decades of the 19th century were the architects of the city's artistic awakening, and achieved recognition both at home and abroad. Juan Cristóbal González Quesada, the sculptor, joins the threesome formed by José María Rodríguez-Acosta, José María López Mezquita and Gabriel Morcillo.
The last Hall is an extension of the previous one but focuses principally on the second half of the 20th century. It includes artists born between the late 19th century, such as Ismael González de la Serna and Manuel Ángeles Ortiz, and the early decades of the 20th century, such as Manuel Rivera, José Rivera and José Guerrero. All of these artists made a clear decision to open their art to renewed artistic trends.