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Title Acrobats at Tetuan
Collection Warrington Museum and Art Gallery
Artist Fortuny y Carbó, Mariano José María Bernardo (Spanish painter, 1838-1874)
Date 1859 (dated)
Signed yes
Description This painting, described as unfinished, dates from a formative period in the career of the most important mid-nineteenth century Spanish artist, Marino Fortuny. During the Spanish War with Morocco (around 1860), Fortuny was sent to Morocco to record scenes of battle. This experience was the crucible in which his artistic personality took shape; the richness of the colour, the dazzling light and exotic environment contributed to his distinctive style. He now strove for freshness, realism and local detail, using vibrant colour and a freer and more spontaneous brushstroke. Another painting, also described as unfinished, Battle of Tetuan (1862-4), confirms the artist's familiarity with the region. After Fortuny's return to Rome his style gained in fluency and virtuosity, delicacy of touch and dazzling colour. He received an advantageous business contract from the Parisian dealer Goupil, which brought him money and fame but which subjected his work to a commercial taste. The Warrington painting is therefore a rare example of his earliest, and arguably, best work.
Current Accession Number WAGMG:1877.99
Inscription front ll 'Tetuan 1859'
Subject everyday life (acrobats); place (Tetuan, Morocco)
Measurements 83.8 x 141 cm.0 cm (estimate)
Material oil on canvas
Acquisition Details Given by Robert Davies 1877.
Principal Exhibitions Exhibition of Spanish Art, New Art Gallery, London, 1895; Guildhall, London, 1901; Muhammadan Art Exhibition, Whitechapel, London, 1908.
Notes Chalk inscription back ul '139(;)or 13G'. Front information on frame lc 'ACROBATS at Tetuan by Fortuny (unfinished) Presented by Robert Davies Esq.' 'Saltimbauques à Tetuan' in an early accession book 1877 described as 'unfinished', with a note see Committee Meeting Minutes, 27 September 1877.
Rights Owner Warrington Museum and Art Gallery
Author Lisa Howard



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