Colloque : Display, Access to, and Contemplation of Collections in the Habsburg Court, 1516-1700.

Diego Velasquez, Las Meninas, ca. 1656, huile sur toile toile, 318 x 276 cm, Madrid, museo nacional del Prado.

Diego Velasquez, Las Meninas, ca. 1656, huile sur toile toile, 318 x 276 cm, Madrid, museo nacional del Prado.

Type : colloque.
Date du colloque : du 27 au 28 juin 2016.
Lieu : Madrid, museo del Prado.

This congress approaches collecting in the Spanish Habsburg court from perspectives that have barely been explored before: the material conditions in which artworks were exhibited (how high they were hung, on what surfaces, with what types of lighting, frames and possible accompanying inscriptions), their accessibility (what could be seen by whom, when and in what circumstances; the existence of more and less restricted settings and the norms governing visits, including the exchange of gifts and the acquisition of copies) and lastly, the criteria underlying the association and collecting of works, as well as the people charged with such activities.

Directed by : Miguel Falomir. Associate Director of Research and Conservation, Museo del Prado.
Organized by : Escuela del Prado.

See the Prado’s website for more information and inscriptions
Email :


Lundi 27 juin 2016

9.00-9.30 registration

Opening remarks by
Miguel Falomir, Associate Director of Research and Conservation, Museo del Prado

I Documentary Sources and Courtly Collecting. Review and New Perspectives
Chaired by : Fernando Checa. Complutense University of Madrid, Department of Art History II (Early Modern)

This section seeks to broaden knowledge and explore new, fundamentally methodological approaches to sources and documents associated with art from the Early Modern Era and its relations to the Spanish Monarchy, the latter understood as a vast intercontinental cultural setting that extended far beyond strictly Iberian or peninsular limits. This involves understanding not only the « treatises » and theoretical or historical sources customarily included in the traditional field of « Kunstliteratur, » but also a broader spectrum that runs from inventories and correspondence through descriptions of artworks, including travelogues, descriptions of celebratory events, etc., as well as poetical and creative literature.

Fuentes festivas habsbúrgicas en un imperio de cortes
Víctor Mínguez Cornelles, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón

Los inventarios y la primera globalización : el caso portugués
Nuno Senos, Centro de História d’Aquém e d’Além-Mar – CHAM, Universidade Nova de Lisboa

From weapons to relics. Philip II’s treasury according to a Japanese/Jesuitical source
Catarina Santana Simões, Centro de História d’Aquém e d’Além-Mar – CHAM, Universidade Nova de Lisboa

11.30-12.00 Coffe-break

El Alcázar de Madrid, sede de la monarquía hispánica (1600-1701). Recapitulación y nuevas vías de estudio a partir de los inventarios reales
Ángel Rodríguez Rebollo, Fundación Universitaria Española

Sobre el « Parnaso español » de Antonio Palomino y las colecciones reales
José Riello, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

13.00-14.00 discussion

II The Places of Collecting
Chaired by : Javier Portús. Museo Nacional del Prado

This section studies collecting in the Habsburg court from the perspective of where the artworks were actually exhibited. The emphasis is not so much on the physical characteristics of such spaces as on how their decoration was influenced by these characteristics and by the spaces’ use. Equally cogent will be the manner in which changes in the use of such spaces led to modifications in their decoration, and how a « rhetoric of place » was established in Habsburg palaces and other associated spaces.

Mercedes Simal : Title to be confirmed

José M. Barbeito : Title to be confirmed

16.30-17.00 Pausa

The Ochabada Room in « Mariana in Mourning » & Prince Baltasar Carlos´s Chamber in « Las Meninas »
Mercedes Llorente, Centro de História d’Aquém e d’Além-Mar – CHAM, Universidade Nova de Lisboa

Las paredes hablan: Maravillas humanas en la « casa de plazer de su Magestad »
Andrea Ortiz Fuentes, Universitat de València

18.00-19.00: discussion

Mardi 28 juin 2016

III Access to, and Contemplation of the Royal Collections
Chaired by : Adolfo Carrasco. University of Valladolid, Department of Early Modern History

In this section, we are interested in who had access, and in what manner, to the collections of any sort of artworks at the royal seats, palaces, viceregal capitals, and even the homes of noble families (to the degree that they competed with or emulated royalty). We will also focus on the functional and formal organization of such visits, both as individual events and as part of other activities. In sum, this section delves into the regulation of the visibility and « reading » of artworks in the context of courtly culture, recognizing their role in projecting power (pomp and propaganda) and their evaluation (taste) during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Ver en palacio: el acceso a la imagen en las cortes virreinales de Italia
Carlos J. Hernando Sánchez, Universidad de Valladolid

Entre curiosidad y estudio. El acceso informal a las colecciones reales en el siglo XVII
Ángel Aterido, Universidad Complutense de Madrid

Entre el convento y la corte: Las imágenes del Niño Jesús de Sor Margarita de la Cruz en las Descalzas reales
Tanya J. Tiffany, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

11.30-12.00 Coffe-break

Las otras colecciones artísticas en el Alcázar de Madrid durante el reinado de Felipe II
Almudena Pérez de Tudela, Patrimonio Nacional

13.00-14.00 discussion

IV Showing Art. The Display of the Royal Collections
Chaired by : Peter Cherry. Trinity College Dublin, Department of History of Art and Architecture

This section will examine the role of paintings in Habsburg interiors. Consideration will be given to physical circumstances of display and the factors which governed the arrangement of pictures in different spaces, such as their authorship, subject matter, size, visibility, and conditions of lighting. Particular attention will be paid to pictures as material objects, in terms of their support and medium, types of framing and coverings, and the relevance of inscriptions. Their relationships with other aspects of interior decoration and furnishings will also feature prominently in this inquiry.

The king’s portrait in royal palaces
Diane Bodart, Columbia University

Reconstructing la « pieza del despacho de verano »: Problems and Possibilities
Thierry Greub, Scientific Researcher at the Internationales Kolleg Morphomata at the University of Cologne

16.30-17.00 Coffe-break

« Mercury », reconsidered
Julia Vázquez, Columbia University

Beyond Exotica. Cabinets and Rhino Horns in Juan de Borja’s Inventories
Bruno A. Martinho, European Institute University, Florencia

18.00-19.00 discussion and concluding remarks.