JOSÉ CORTEZ DE ALCOCER
Active in Quito circa 1775
SAINT JOSEPH AND CHILD
signed lower right: J.lis Cortez .pinxit / a. 789a.
oil on canvas
canvas: 291⁄8 by 193⁄8 in.; 74 by 49.2 cm.
framed: 35 by 30 in.; 88.9 by 76.2 cm.
The canvas appears to be unlined, though the edges have been strip-lined. The decorative image has been well preserved, with its details and bright colors kept. Inspection under UV reveals some strengthening at far right, next to the left elbow of the central figure, as well as a long line of retouching at bottom center. Barely any, but a few other tiny pindots of retocuhes are here and there. Offered in an elegant giltwood frame with a detachable ornament at top center.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
José Cortez de Alcocer managed an active workshop in Quito during the 18th century. He was favored by the elite of the ruling government, becoming one of the lead painters in Ecuador. This lot shows his mastery of vibrant colors that were in taste at the time, while the gold embroidery adds a level of divinity that can often be seen in his devotional works. The inclusion of flowers as garlands, likely inspired by the Old Masters such as Jan Brueghel and Sir Peter Paul Rubens, reappears in other
works like in Our Lady of the Reedbed of Irún with Donor, Captain Joaquín Elorrieta formerly in the collection of Roberta and Richard Huber, New York, but now in the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia (inv. no. 2012-139-4). His paintings have been exhibited in other prominent museums like Museo de América, Madrid and Art Museum of the Americas, Washington, D.C.