PROPERTY OF A EUROPEAN PRIVATE COLLECTOR
Sorolla´s first went to Andalusia in Easter 1902 with his close friend Pedro Gil de Mora and his wife. He did not return until 1908 when he was commissioned to paint Queen Victoria Eugenia in Seville, and then the following year when he painted the Alhambra for the first time.
On these visits, Sorolla had been so mesmerised by the Andalusian gardens that he brought his wife Clotilde and his two daughters, María and Elena, on a third trip in 1910 in order to share with them the beauty of the region. He wrote in a letter to Archer M. Huntington: ‘I´m here again, this time with Clotilde and my children, who don´t know Andalusia. This trip gives María the opportunity to escape the cold winter in Madrid, and whilst we are here we are going to go to Granada, Ronda and Algeciras.’ (27th February 1910, Seville, The Hispanic Society of America).
The present work depicts the beach of La Caleta, where Sorolla spent several days painting with his daughter. The work conveys the harmony between the blue of the sea and the sky. Unlike Sorolla’s summer beach scenes of Valencia and Jávea which exude warmth and laughter, the atmosphere here is mellow and sedate. Nevertheless, the subdued palette and lulling brushstrokes of the foam on the surface of the sea render this work highly emotive.
During this year, Sorolla was also organising his major exhibitions with the Hispanic Society of America in New York, Buffalo and Boston, which proved to be very successful. For the two exhibitions held the following year at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Saint Louis Art Museum, Sorolla had to create an entirely new portfolio. Thus, he took to Seville’s beautiful gardens such as Sierra Nevada, the Alhambra, and the Generalife, before setting off once more to Malaga.
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