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Spanish Painter Ignacio Zuloaga (1870-1945)

"The Great Basque" Ignacio Zuloaga comes from five generations of painters: his great-grandfather Don Bias Zuloaga was a contemporary of Goya, his grandfather Don Eusebio Zuloaga was an an accomplished armourer, his father Don Placido Zuloaga was a versalite handicraftsman.

Ignacio Zuloaga - "Antonia la gallega"

Ignacio Zuloaga y Zabaleta was born in a small town of Eibar (the province of Gipuzkoa, in the Basque Country of Spain), in the 16th century palacio, a family home for generations. As a young man he visited Madrid and after haunting the Prado for days, he begged his father to buy him paints and brushes.

Ignacio Zuloaga - "Picture of Lola with a Dress of White Flowers"
At 19, he traveled to Rome where he spent his time in the ateliers of the Via Margutta and nearby trattorias. Several months later, he left for Paris where he made his home in Montmartre like many aspiring young painters and lived there for 5 years. His friend Santiago Rusiñol wrote that Zuloaga shut himself up there `to live in silence, to work in darkness awaiting the light; he rented a studio with a view over the cemetry, he surrounded himself with solitude, and he lived all alone with painting, courting her all day and dreaming of her all night, and he took on a manservant who was mad of a most peculiar kind of madness...'(Enrique Lafuente Ferrari, The Life and Work of Ignacio Zuloaga).

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of SEÑORA ATUCHA
The first time he exhibited his canvas in 1890 - among his fellow-exhibitors were Toulouse-Lautrec, van Gogh, Maurice Denis, Jean-Édouard Vuillard, Gauguin, Emile Bernard and Signac.
Meating with no success Zuloaga leaves for London and in a while for Spain - he set up a studio in Sevilla.

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of Doña Carmen Arconada, 1940
Influenced by Velázquez and Goya and working with infinite energy and enthusiasm, he painted mostly images of Basque and Andalusian traditions. He sent a few canvases to the New Salon of 1894, with no success again.
But already at the exhibition of 1896 in Barcelona his canvas "Friends" was was purchased for the Municipal and Provincial Museum of Barcelona. At the Salon of 1899 his painting "My Cousins and My Uncle Daniel" was purchased for the Musee du Luxembourg. (Zuloaga's cousin Cándida, the daughter of his uncle Daniel, was one of his favourite models, she appeared in 24 of his paintings.)

Ignacio Zuloaga - Víspera de la corrida, 1898
In 1909, Zuloaga returned to the French capital triumphant, The Spanish art historian Lafuente Ferrari wrote: "The success of previous years had placed the Eibar painter in the limelight in the ville lumière, making him fashionable in certain Parisian circles. The brilliance and seamlessness of his personality, backed by the graces and talent of his wife, made his lodgings a place sought after in Paris ... On the first day of the year 1909, Zuloaga gave a Spanish party for his friends, which was tantamount to saying the entire Paris of arts and letters at a time when Paris was truly and deservedly the arts capital of Europe ... There gathered around Zuloaga and his wife at the rue Caulaincourt apartment Rodin, Arsenio Alexandre, Maizeroy, Charles Cottet, the musician Laparra, Durrio, D'Annunzio's wife, Madame Catulle Mendès, La Breval, the pianist Rigalt, Madame Goulouveff, Albéniz and Congosto, the Spanish consul and good friend of Zuloaga since that period. This international parade of illustrious names contemplated the latest and most powerful works of the master, his collection of El Greco paintings, and savoured Spanish wines while being treated to a variegated programme of music and dance - Pablo Casals, with his 'cello; the famous Angel Barrios Llovet, a guitarist of renown; Fabián the gypsy and Juana La Macarrona put the wild note of flamenco dance into that meeting so in tune with the times of 1909."
Ignacio Zuloaga - Candida in Yellow (the artist's cousin was the subject of 24 of his paintings)

Zuloaga never attended an art school, he once said: "All I knew of the Ecole des Beaux-Arts was the view one has of it from the windows of the Louvre."

Ignacio Zuloaga - Lolita Reclining in a Blue Shawl

Ignacio Zuloaga - An Elegant Lady Fanning Herself

Ignacio Zuloaga - Self Portrait, 1931

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of Painter Balenciaga

Ignacio Zuloaga - Retrato del marques de Villamarciel, 1893

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of the Countess Mathieu de Noailles (very popular author Anna de Noailles)

Ignacio Zuloaga - Celestina, 1906

Ignacio Zuloaga - Gypsy Dance on Terrace, Granada, 1922-23

Ignacio Zuloaga - Desnudo de la mantilla y el clavel (Nude in Mantilla with a Carnation), 1915

Ignacio Zuloaga - In Saint Cloude

Ignacio Zuloaga - Mercedes

Ignacio Zuloaga - On the Balcony

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of Lucienne Bréval

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of Senora Corcuera

Ignacio Zuloaga - Reclining Maja with Blue and Gold

Ignacio Zuloaga - Surprise

Ignacio Zuloaga - The Amazon, 1940

Ignacio Zuloaga - Woman with Fan

Ignacio Zuloaga - THE BRUNETTE, WITH WHITE SHAWL, 1913

Ignacio Zuloaga - Portrait of Senora Malinowska (la rusa)

Zuloaga Ignacio - The Dwarf Doña Mercédes, 1899

Ignacio Zuloaga - El picador El Coriano 1897

Ignacio Zuloaga - Torerillos de pueblo

Ignacio Zuloaga - Torerillos de Turégano

Ignacio Zuloaga - Torero

Ignacio Zuloaga - Calle de una vieja ciudad castellana

Ignacio Zuloaga - Rincon castellano

Ignacio Zuloaga - Paisaje de Navarra

Ignacio Zuloaga - Vista de Segovia

Ignacio Zuloaga - Casas de Segovia

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  1. Thanks for this. I was not familiar with Zuloaga's work and so it was a great pleasure to find your post with so many illustrations. I recently learned that Zuloaga was Franco's favorite painter.

    1. How interesting! I probably missed this info somehow..
      thanks for your comment!

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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