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Irapuato
1606
The Museo del Prado acquires The Virgin of the Pomegranate by Fra Angelico. A remarkable masterpiece in an excellent state of conservation, the painting will become one of the icons of the Museo …More
The Museo del Prado acquires The Virgin of the Pomegranate by Fra Angelico.

A remarkable masterpiece in an excellent state of conservation, the painting will become one of the icons of the Museo del Prado. This acquisition has been completed with the personal donation by the Duke of Alba, Carlos Fitz-James Stuart y Martínez de Irujo, of another important panel that has recently been researched at the Prado and can now also be attributed to Fra Angelico.

The Royal Board of Trustees of the Museo del Prado and with the Minister of Education, Culture and Sport, Iñigo Méndez de Vigo, also in attendance, today approved the acquisition of The Virgin of the Pomegranate, the only masterpiece of early 15th-century Florentine painting and probably one of the works by Fra Angelico to remain in private hands.
The payment of this 18 million Euro acquisition over the next four years will be funded by a special contribution of 10 million Euros from the State, an exceptional contribution of 4 million Euros from the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado, and another 4 million from the Museum’s own funds.
At the same meeting it was also decided to accept the offer made by Carlos Fitz-James Stuart y Martínez de Irujo, 19th Duke of Alba de Tormes, to donate another important Florentine work, a predella panel on the subject of the death of Saint Anthony Abbot, which has recently also been attributed to Fra Angelico following a study of the work at the Museum.
The two paintings, both acquired in Florence in 1817, represent an example of the sophisticated and early collecting interests of Carlos Miguel Fitz-James Stuart y Silva, 14th Duke of Alba, who acquired the works and had them sent to Spain where they entered the Alba ducal collection.
With the addition of these two new works by Fra Angelico, the Museo del Prado will become an international reference point for the study of this Florentine master, who was previously only represented in the collection by The Annunciation. These two further works enormously enrich the Museum’s small but outstanding group of paintings by this early Italian Renaissance painter.
The present Duke of Alba, who has been responsible for the negotiations, has said that “The Fundación Casa de Alba is extremely proud to hand over to the Museo del Prado these masterpieces of European art, reunited and cared for by my family for two centuries, so that from now on they can be enjoyed by all Spaniards and art lovers from every part of the world who visit and admire our most important Museum.”
In acknowledgement of the Duke’s admirable gesture of only offering this remarkable masterpiece to the Museo del Prado and the generosity of the donation that completes its acquisition, the Museum’s Royal Board of Trustees has proposed that he should be made an honorary trustee. The present Duke of Alba is responsible for the administration of the House of Alba and is president of its Foundation. He is also honorary vice-president of the Fundación Hispania Nostra, of which he was president from 1976 to 1980, which devotes its activities to safeguarding and promoting knowledge of the Spanish cultural and natural heritage.
www.artwis.com/…/the-museo-del-p…
Irapuato
✍️ The Virgin of the Pomegranate takes its name from the pomegranate held by the Virgin and which attracts the attention of the Christ Child, who touches it. In this context the fruit has a double meaning: in the Virgin’s hands it refers to her chastity, while by touching it the Christ Child prefigures his own death and resurrection. This iconography was widely used in 15th-century Florence …More
✍️ The Virgin of the Pomegranate takes its name from the pomegranate held by the Virgin and which attracts the attention of the Christ Child, who touches it. In this context the fruit has a double meaning: in the Virgin’s hands it refers to her chastity, while by touching it the Christ Child prefigures his own death and resurrection. This iconography was widely used in 15th-century Florence where it interested artists such as Sandro Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci. www.artwis.com/…/the-museo-del-p…