|Raimundo de Madrazo y Garreta (1841-1920)|
Study of Alina Masson.
Oil on canvas
55 x 47cm. 21 1/2 x 18 1/2 inches.
Signed and dated 1878.
Inscribed in pencil by the artist with a dedication
to his favourite model Aline Masson.
Raimundo de Madrazo y Garreta (1841-1920):
Raimundo de Madrazo was a celebrated Spanish artist renowned for his extraordinary ability as a portrait painter. He was most famous for his elegant portraits of fashionable society and among his wealthy American patrons were the Astor, Vanderbilt, Belmont and Whitney families. Raimundo was born in Rome in 1841 into a family of artists with a noble background. The Madrazo family were one of the most important painting dynasties and dominated 19th century painting in Spain. Initially tutored by his father and grandfather Raimundo later attended the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid where he studied under Carlos Luis de Ribera and Carlos de Haes. After 1862 he lived mostly in Paris but was a frequent visitor to New York, London, Rome and Buenos Aires securing
portrait commissions from the aristocratic elite of each city.
Many of his genre paintings feature the model Alina Masson, the doorman's daughter at the Paris residence of the Marquis de Casa Riera whom he would often visit with his friends. The young Raimundo was dazzled by her beauty and she became his favourite and virtually only model for the genre paintings that he produced for the international market. They commonly show a beautiful girl in a sumptuous interior and the demand for these paintings from members of the aristocracy in Europe and America never waned. This sensitive portrait study dedicated to Alina is likely to have been painted by the artist for his model, the focus of his admiration. Raimundo was a frequent exhibitor at the Paris Salon. He received many accolades and awards, including a gold medal at the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1889 and the same year he was made an Officer of the Legion d'Honneur. Collections: Worldwide including the Prado, Madrid; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museo Carmen Thyssen, Malaga.