Category Archives: Sculpture

A suspected medieval sculpture of the Virgin discovered in a Galician river, near Santiago de Compostela

Photo: Conchi Paz, Courtesy of Galician regional government

On June 5th, fisherman Fernando Brey tripped over a moss covered stone in the Sar river in Galicia when he was struck by its unusual shape. Indeed, this was not an ordinary riverbed rock. He had literally stumbled upon a sculpture of the Virgin and Child, whose faces are now missing, with two worn angels behind the Virgin’s shoulders, who appear to hold up her mantle. Brey quickly shared his discovery with Apatrigal, a local heritage association, and the Galician Ministry of Culture, who believe the work dates to the 14th century.

According to Apatrigal’s statement, the 150kg granite sculpture is carved on all sides other than the back, including the underside of its base, leading them to believe it was meant to be suspended on a wall. They also hypothesize that the work may have originally been located in the now-lost 12th-century Convent of Santa María de Conxo, which was very close to the discovery site in the Sar river. The sculpture has now been moved to the Museo das Peregrinacións in Santiago de Compostela, where it will be cleaned and analysed to determine its probable origin and dating. ‘Studies should tell us whether this is a very valuable gothic statue’, regional minister of culture Román Rodríguez said, as reported in The Guardian, ‘but beyond its cultural and historic value, we’ll also need to try to put together the story of this statue: What happened, and how could it remain undiscovered so close to the city for so many centuries? It must be quite a story’.

See more on this story in La Voz de Galicia

Luis Salvador Carmona (Detroit)



The Detroit Institute of Arts Museum has acquired a Virgin and Child by Luis Salvador Carmona (1709-1767). The work was created in response to a commission of c.1750-51 “from the brotherhood attached to the Royal Tapestry Factory, Madrid, […] for their chapel.”

Madrid: Master Mateo at the Prado

2016-11-mastermateo2016-11-mastermateo-text-jpgMaster Mateo and his work for the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela

Madrid, Museo del Prado, Villanueva Building

The exhibition brings together an exceptional group of fourteen works that were removed in the past from their original location (the west façade and choir of the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela) and are now housed in the cathedral museum and in different institutions and private collections.

Notable among them are the recently restored sculptures of David and Solomon, and a Statue-column of a male figure holding a cartouche that was found last October inside the cathedral’s south tower, a discovery that represents an enormous advance in our knowledge of Master Mateo’s activities in the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.

Co-organised with the Real Academia Gallega de Bellas Artes, and the Fundación Catedral de Santiago.

Sculpture in the City (Londo)


Sculpture in the City

City of London
July 2016 to May 2017

15 large-scale public sculptures by artists including the Catalan sculptor Jaume Plensa’s Laura (2013), one of his female portraits symbolising the state of dreaming and aspiration (shown near ‘the Gherkin’); and four works from Peruvian-born Lizi Sánchez’s abstract Cadenetas series (2016) of small brightly-coloured lead rings cut into loops forming interlocking rings.

Connect here for map of the City of London Sculpture Trail.


Joana Vasconcelos at Waddesdon Manor

2016-07-Vasconcelos_MF_bJoana Vasconcelos: Lafite

Waddesdon Manor, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire
15 June – 23 October 2016

Major new addition to Waddesdon’s contemporary art collection, and part of its programme to work with contemporary artists. A pair of sculptures by Joana Vasconcelos has been installed on the North Front. In the form of a giant pair of candlesticks made of glass wine bottles (from Château Lafite Rothschild), set on a steel armature and lit from within with fibre-optic strands, they symbolise the Rothschild family’s connection to the world of wine.
Joana Vasconcelos (b.1971) lives and works in Lisbon and exhibits internationally, most recently at the Château de Versailles and at the Manchester City Art Gallery.
Video showing Vasconcelos and her team construct the sculptures, with Lord Rothschild talking about them.


Joaquím Gomis: Fundición Gimeno/Gimeno Foundry

Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona
10 May – 18 September 2016

Photographic exhibition focussing on the development of Catalan sculpture from the 1900s to the 1940s, including a series of images taken by Gomis (1902-1991) of his friend Miró’s visits to the Barcelona-based Gimeno foundry between 1944 and 1949, where the sculptor created his first series of bronzes. When Gomis (the first president of the Miró Foundation, 1972-75) visited the foundry workshop it had accumulated many sculpted rejects and forgotten maquettes left behind over the past four decades, which he captured with his camera.

CfP: The Matter of Sculpture in Southern Italy, Spain and the New World

El Greco: St Francis Kneeling in Meditation (Art Institute of Chicago)

El Greco: St Francis Kneeling in Meditation (Art Institute of Chicago)

Renaissance Society of America (RSA) 2017 Conference
Chicago, 30 March – 1 April 2017

Call for Papers:
The Matter of Sculpture in Southern Italy, Spain and the New World

The history of sculpture has, particularly with regard to the early modern period, been dominated by studies on marble and bronze, materials that are at the core of traditional art literature. Yet, as Michael Baxandall has shown in his Limewood Sculptors of Renaissance Germany, different materials might be related to different geographies and very different discourses. This session aims to explore the material richness of early modern sculpture, focusing in particular on the axis between the Kingdom of Naples, Sicily, Spain and the New World. More specifically, we are interested in the ways in which different materials might tell different stories about artistic developments, patronage, artists and local traditions, uncover different sources, and create new connections between various geographical areas. The wooden sculptures of Spain are a well-known example; one may also think, among others, of Sicilian wax sculptures, the silver sculptures of Naples, Lecce’s sculptures in the local pietra leccese, or the cornstalk-paste sculptures of Latin America.

Please send proposals to Johannes Röll ( and Joris van Gastel ( by Sunday, 5 June 2016.

As per RSA guidelines, proposals must include the following: paper title (15-word maximum), abstract (150-word maximum), keywords, and a very brief curriculum vitae (300-word maximum).

Colnaghi merges with ARTES sponsors Coll & Cortés

ARTES is delighted to announce that Jorge Coll and Nicolas Cortés of Coll & Cortés (London & Madrid) have become partners with Konrad Bernheimer of Colnaghi.

Coll & Cortés have very generously sponsored the ARTES scholarship and bursary awards since their inception in 2012 and we wish them every success in their new venture.


15-11-05-2215NE03B Jorge Coll and Nicolas Cortes.jpgNicolas Cortés & Jorge Coll


15-11-05-2215NE03A Konrad Bernheimer.jpg

 Konrad Bernheimer

The new firm will continue to trade as Colnaghi with Konrad Bernheimer remaining as Chairman, while Coll & Cortés will continue to operate in Madrid. Early next year Colnaghi will move from their current premises in Old Bond Street to a new, larger, custom-built gallery in James’s and there will be an inaugural exhibition at TEFAF Maastricht in March 2016, followed later in the year by one at their new premises. Colnaghi’s extensive library and archives, currently stored at Windmill Hill on the Waddesdon Estate in Buckinghamshire, will also move to the new 26 Bury Street building.

Coll & Cortés
Coll & Cortés was founded in 2005 by Jorge Coll and Nicolás Cortés. Launched with a gallery on Calle Justiniano in Madrid, the business expanded at the end of 2012 by opening a gallery in London’s Mayfair. Since their inception Coll & Cortés has aimed to source and sell the best examples of European paintings and sculptures, as well as arts from the Spanish-speaking world. Coll & Cortés has presented a number of exhibitions and publications focused on areas of art history that may have been overlooked, but which are rich in quality and cultural significance. Their first two exhibitions, Masters of Baroque (2005) and The Time of Painting (2007), were scholarly surveys of painting in Spain from the 16th to the 19th centuries. Their following exhibition in 2009 addressed polychrome wood sculpture and was timed to coincide with The Sacred Made Real, a seminal exhibition on the same subject held at The National Gallery in London. The Mystery of Faith presented a turning point both in the recognition of the Coll & Cortés gallery but also in the appeal – both aesthetic and commercial – of Spanish polychrome wood sculpture. Their fourth project was dedicated to the arts of the Spanish-speaking world in all its forms, from painting to sculpture, tapestries to furniture, silver to ivories. This survey was aimed not only at promoting individual works of art but also at gathering and publishing the most recent scholarly research on this highly specialised subject. Their recent publications on artists including Leone and Pompeo Leoni, Guglielmo della Porta, Pedro de Mena and Guercino were further attempts at presenting the finest objects on the market with the most up-to-date scholarship. Their current publication Granada: The Mystic Baroque is a brief study of the city’s rich cultural heritage. The first part is a survey of its many museums, churches and fraternities, as well as of the paintings and sculptures within them. The second includes detailed investigations of seventeen baroque sculptures carved by the leading Granadiño artists broadly active between 1620 and 1740. The Coll & Cortés gallery has proudly been exhibiting at The European Fine Art Fair, Maastricht, since 2012, Spring Masters, New York, since 2014, and London Art Week since 2014. The gallery also participated at Frieze Masters in 2013 and 2014.

Founded in 1760, Colnaghi is one of the most renowned and venerable art galleries in the world. A print publisher and dealer in the 18th century, Colnaghi moved to Pall Mall in 1786 becoming the destination of choice for collectors and, by the early 19th century, being appointed Printsellers to the Prince Regent, later George IV. The company’s prominent position saw them work with celebrated artists including John Constable, for whom they arranged the exhibition of ‘The Hay Wain’ at the Paris Salon in 1824 where the painting was awarded the Gold Medal. From the late 19th century, Colnaghi assumed a dominant position in the field of Old Masters, pioneering the market during the early 20th century as American millionaires acquired European masters from aristocratic collections and built the foundations of their great institutions. In 1911, the firm moved to New Bond Street, and in 1930, it oversaw the sale by The Soviet Government of some of the greatest masterpieces from The Hermitage, the bulk of which were acquired by Mr. Andrew Mellon and are now found in The National Gallery of Art, Washington. In 1940, the company moved to Old Bond Street and in 1970, Colnaghi was modernised after it was acquired by The Hon. Jacob (now Lord) Rothschild, who rejuvenated the business, appointing a number of young Directors and encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation. In 2002, Colnaghi was acquired by Konrad Bernheimer, a long established art dealer from Munich whose family had been purveyors of antiques and works of art to the Royal House of Bavaria in the 19th century. He was soon joined by Katrin Bellinger, a renowned specialist dealer of Old Master drawings. Colnaghi continues to be recognised as one of the greatest and most successful art galleries, and builds its longstanding tradition of selling works of art to international museums including, in the last 5 years, to Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles and the Princely Collections of Lichtenstein, among others.