The ‘Spanish Masters from the Hermitage. The world of El Greco, Ribera, Zurbarán, Velázquez, Murillo & Goya’ exhibition can be admired in the Hermitage until 29 May. This exhibition draws attention to the broader context of painting in the Spanish Golden Century (second half of the sixteenth and the seventeenth century) and the echoes and continuation in subsequent centuries.
Spanish masterpieces were created during the reign of Philip II, the absolute monarch of a colonial empire who enforced strict rules for Catholic paintings. The period that followed was dominated by artists including Francisco de Zurbáran, also known as the Spanish Caravaggio.
A great many aspects of Spanish history are highlighted in this collection, such as the horrors of Napoleon’s conquest in 1808, bullfighting and Mediterranean pub life. The variation of the exhibition is also expressed in the alternation of Spanish painting styles: Baroque, Rococo, dramatic realism and spiritual minimalism.
One of the top attractions in this part of the city is of course the house where Rembrandt lived and worked. From how he mixed his paints to where he stared out of the window, from where he slept and with his beloved Saskia or where his son was born, the most intimate details of his life are tangible in these beautiful chambers. The free audioguide will lead you along and show you how this house was the culmination of his success but also the décor of his downfall.
Live paint preparation
During the day free demonstrations are given on etching and print making which offer amazing insight in the master’s techniques
Join one of the printmaking workshops, they offer wonderful insights in Rembrandt's craftsmanship