Pablo de Céspedes (1538-1608)

Painter, sculptor and architect. He was born in Córdoba year 1538 in the house of Francisco Lopez Aponte, prebendary of that holy church, and uncle Alonso de Céspedes, our father and brother of Pedro Pablo de Céspedes, who was then also racionero Ja same cathedral. He called his grandfather Alonso de Céspedes, noble and whose father was born in Ocaña, and his paternal grandmother Francisca de Mora. The mother was born in the village of Alcolea of ​​Torote, Arroyo was called Olaya, and was the daughter of Ciprián Pascualas Arroyo and Martinez , natural and neighbors in the same village. No more is this explanation, when it comes to one of the best artists, antiquarians, humanists and scholars that existed in Spain.

His training in Italy
Are maintained and educated at the house where he was born , studying the first letters, grammar and philosophy until the age of eighteen years; and in the 1556 went to Alcala de Henares to higher studies and oriental languages ​​at. Not known how long it took them, ni si aprendió en España el arte de la pintura, but it is believed that before going to Italy had, some principles. Pacheco, his friend, dice that estuvó twice in Rome, and it seems that Michelangelo did not reach, because in his writings speaks of not having known, but the things that he said , and how they manifest in their works affection was, you certainly studied under the direction of one of his disciples.

Gave evidence in that capital of his great overtaking paint the fresco painted on the wall of the church of Araceli, on the tomb of the Marquis of Saluzzo, representing some children; and in the chapel of the Annunciation, in Trinidad del Monte, with the story of the Virgin, and the prophets in the pillars, noticing all great ways and good way; and sculpture with marble head statue made for Seneca, it had not, and appearing one morning she was widely applauded, and wrote at the bottom: Víctor U Spagnuolo. These and other works gave him a lot of credit and estimation in Rome, as well as the treatment and friendship he had with antiquarians and scholars, which may have contributed to get a serving of Cordoba Cathedral.

He obtained this grace was restored to his country and took over the day 7 September 1577 general approval of the chapter of canons and the bishop. She worked with the most accomplished choir assistance, and serious commissions and committees that the council put in their care , as it was having arranged notebook holy Martyrs of Cordoba with Dr. Ambrosio de Morales, by which it was ordered to pray at this holy church in June 1583. So I kept on painting to entertain , and then made the canvases will point to the end.

I used to spend months in Sevilla recles, where it is believed house had part of their studies and antiques, as hinted in the speech he wrote to Pedro de Valencia on the comparison of ancient and modern painting and sculpture, saying: "I had an Egyptian figurine black stone , all of hieroglyphics carved: hase lost in the fever of Seville, she died because of my servant, that was in charge with others.” It was for the last time in that city year 1603 , when his friend Pacheco canvases painted in tempera fable of Daedalus and Icarus to the dressing room clearance D. Fernando Henriquez de Ribera, Third Duke of Alcalá, which were endorsed , assuring him that it was the temple that had used the old, and the more he settled gouache he had learned in Italy.

Return to Cordoba
Went back to Cordova in alternative Choir, practice in the fine arts, and write about their theories and antiques to the end of his life; and as recorded in the book point that cathedral choir: »murió el señor racionero Pablo de Céspedes, racionero whole of this holy church of Cordoba, a 26 of July 1608 years old. Are obliged after all to say two Masses for his soul benefited lords.” And the margin has the following note : "Great painter and architect , great virtues which ennobled our Spain.” He was buried in the cathedral itself, as about eight yards away and in front of the chapel of S. Paul; and on the tombstone of his burial ordered the council to record this epitaph:

Paulus de Cespedes hujus ALMAE Ecclesiae porcionarius,
picturae Sculturae , architecture , all of the Arts , various tongues, This situation is.
Anno Domini Obiit M.DC.VIIL Seftimo halendas sextillis.

And the book also includes loads with the Chapter, that: "Mr. Pablo de Céspedes gave an anniversary that the illustrious cabildo day meets annually 30 July with 7500 maravedís distribution , Party together and holy guardian angel with the same envelope.”

Pablo de Céspedes was the most wise and learned artist who has had Spain, and perhaps you will have very few equaled in Europe. He wrote about how old cathedral, proving that the site occupied, and in which the Moors built their great mosque, is the same when the Romans founded the temple of Janus, on which I had a long correspondence with the antiquarian scholar Andalucía Juan Fernández Franco licensed, with great instruction in the art and knowledge of the Arabic language, discoursing with property on the etymology of the voices were of that language in Castilian.

He also owned the Greek and Hebrew , and the uniformity of principles had close friendship with the famous Benito Arias Montano, as said in another speech he wrote on Mount Tauro : "Arias Montano, doctísimo man, to whom I owe great reverence, scholarship and for its unique and incomparable goodness, as the great friendship that existed between us many years…. And elsewhere adds: "Lord Arias Montano, which is in heaven, particularly as my lord and master.”

His poem of the paint, whose pieces retain the zeal of Francisco Pacheco, is superior to writing in Latin Du Fresnoy, and those of Le-Mierre and french Watelets, for his best plan and division, by lifting and clear ideas, the purity of the language and versification harmonious octaves of his rhymes.

I have not found any fragment of the treatise he wrote in perspective, theoretical and practical, more for his paintings is apparent intelligence that would be played; but a piece of discourse that worked on the Temple of Solomon, which finds its origin in the great instruction of painting, and the grace and truth that seeks the Corinthian order architecture, basing their guesses on a statement of Strabo. Pacheco supported the views of his art of painting with a letter he wrote Céspedes year 1608 shortly before his death: very interesting letter to the painters, This is because the different modes of painting used by the old.

But beyond all this erudite speech he wrote the year 1604 after consulting with another friend of his wise chronicler Pedro de Valencia, which he entitled: "A comparison of ancient and modern painting and sculpture" in good faith as confessing that he had not seen or read the work of Vasari, written in his time, contains many stories of the Florentine painters from Cimabue hitherto, referring this writer; and is worthy of all praise knowledge, taste and erudition with which he describes the works of the Greeks, text following the second Cayo Plinio, and the wisdom with which compares with Rafael, Michelangelo, Titian and other famous teachers of his age.

If these writings say its great theoretical knowledge in the fine arts, his paintings make you stand out among the first artists in Italy. Pacheco says, that, "Was one of the best colorists in Spain, Andalucía should whom the good light inks in meat, as manifested in his works Sevilla and Córdoba particularly in their homeland.” Y D. Antonio Ponz after seeing some other states and: "That if as Céspedes TUVO amistad with Federico Zúcaro, and reached the had had to Rafael, It would have been one of the greatest painters in the world, and it was the most learned.”

Pacheco himself talking about Cespedes, says in the unpublished prologue Painting Art, as follows : "But with his death Spain lost happiness as lucid work (the poem speaks of painting) and dilation of his name and fame, as I tell you in an epistle, that being in honor of this subject will be put here just part of it.”
Elegance and grand forms of your drawing is held, the gallantry of Figures, study in anatomy and intelligence, skill in foreshortening, the effect of light dark, the brilliance of colorful, the truth of the expression, and especially his invention, that did not need to beg from others. It also worked on portraits, and being with black pencil drawing of a friend, said this seemed not; and he answered sharply: "Now know vm. that retracts not have to look? Enough, Sir, that make a bold head. And although "the answer seems despropositada (Pacheco added), being of such a subject makes me repair, if in his opinion could better be good head, that like her own,” But this doctrine is not for those who require the most minimal signs and defects of the original.

As grand master had that system, so little used among these days, of modeling and cardboard the same size as the pictures had to have. His drawings, performed regularly with black and red pencil, are very rare and very smart they estimated. I keep one of gouache on brown paper headdresses clear with white lead , counterclaims representing an Arian bishop Prince S. Hermenegildo before going to martyrdom.

The most advanced disciples who left school were Juan Luis Zambrano, Antonio Mohedano, Juan Penalosa, Antonio Contreras and Christopher Vela; and public lawns hand paintings are as follows.

Paintings of Pablo de Céspedes:

Eight canvases placed into the sockets of the second body of the hall council: four contain allegorical figures of women, and the other four children with cards. There are two large in most accounting, representing Santa Justa and Rufina with the Giralda tower in the middle or, and the sacrifice of Isaac.

Two tables in the lounge under, representing Jesus Christ in the Desert Angels served after the temptation of the devil, y un S. Hermenegildo medium bodied, formerly in the professed house of the Jesuits.

The big picture of the Lord's Supper with the apostles, on the altar of the chapel immediately to the sacristy; and representing S. Juan Bautista y S. Andrés primarily, Our Lady with Baby Jesus and Saint Anne, placed in the other chapel altarpiece Ship tabernacle, and two children of the story of Tobias in the bank the same altarpiece.

The set S. Peter Martyr, in the church , and another dinner in the refectory.
Representing the Assumption of Our Lady with the apostles, I was in the college of the Jesuits in Córdoba.

We ignore the fate have other pictures of hand Céspedes was in the church of that school, and representing: St. Catherine's funeral, metal tiller, Abraham's sacrifice, Decapitation of St. Catherine, martyrdom of the wheel , a crucifix with the Virgin and S. John, un Ecce-homo, prayer garden, both S. Juanes and baby Jesus in glory. And in the convent of Santa Clara in the city itself there was also the famous painting of St. Ursula and her companions, that is removed to replace an altarpiece in bad taste.

Historical Dictionary of the most distinguished teachers of the Fine Arts in Spain, Volume 1 – Page 316
Tenant Purchase, Juan Agustín Bermúdez
Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando – 1800
2169 pages

Note: The text is transcribed verbatim from the book, but have upgraded the Castilian and has been accentuated by the present rules.

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