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PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR

Hermenigildo Anglada-Camarasa
SPANISH
GITANA CON NIÑO (GYPSY AND CHILD)
JUMP TO LOT
50

PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR

Hermenigildo Anglada-Camarasa
SPANISH
GITANA CON NIÑO (GYPSY AND CHILD)
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

19th Century European Paintings

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London

Hermenigildo Anglada-Camarasa
1871 - 1959
SPANISH
GITANA CON NIÑO (GYPSY AND CHILD)
signed H. Anglada-Camarasa lower right
oil on canvas
70 by 55cm., 27½ by 21¾in.
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Provenance

La Pinacoteca, Barcelona
Private Collection, Barcelona (purchased from the above in 1928)
Acquired from the above by the present owner in the 1990s

Catalogue Note

Painted in 1925, the present work is an outstanding example of Anglada-Camarasa's departure from his early depictions of gitanas as the colourfully exotic denizens of the gaudy music halls and cafés-concerts of Paris. From 1907 Anglada-Camarasa began to paint his gitanas in a softer, more vulnerable light, accompanied by small children. Blossoming, vibrant flowers encircle the figures of mother and child, with a new luminous palette highlighting this allegory of motherhood (fig. 1).

Plaintive yet passionate, earthy yet full of grace, the Spanish gitana has been all but synonymous with Spain since her kinsfolk first landed on Iberia's shores in the fifteenth century from as far afield as India. The Spanish came to revere but also fear gypsies because of their nomadic way of life and the freedoms it seemed to allow. For some three hundred years, they were persecuted, their settlements broken up, their language and rituals denied them. Yet, paradoxically, the hardship they endured nurtured a whole subculture most nobly embodied by dance and the flamenco.

By the nineteenth century, Spain had embraced Gypsy myth and lore. The Romantics were in awe of the gypsies for their otherworldliness and seeming ability to commune with nature, while the following generation of artists and writers, driven by patriotism in the wake of Spain's colonial losses, venerated the gypsy as the quintessential icon of Spanish identity. Nonell, Zuloaga, and Solana were among Anglada's contemporaries who endowed the gitana with a gravitas, at times playful, at times austere, that linked her inextricably with Spain's psyche. 

19th Century European Paintings

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London