The Sorolla Museum in Madrid

On an impromptu short journey to Madrid earlier this month, we walked through the inner city to find this pearl of a museum. The painting style reminds me of our Danish Skagen painters, but Sorolla paints with another kind of light due to the climate in Spain.

Sorolla was born in Valencia, Spain, in 1862 and died in 1923 in Madrid.

Pictures from the Sorolla museum and the artist’s home

Pictures from the Sorolla Villa Garden

If a coffee stall had been in the garden, this visit would have been even more perfect?

The Sorolla Museum, which has retained the original atmosphere of the home and studio of the renowned Spanish painter Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida (Valencia, 1863 – Cercedilla, 1923), houses the largest collection of his works. It is one of the best preserved house-museums of an artist in Europe, and its garden, which was also designed by him, is a little oasis in the city and was a common subject in his later paintings.

Situated in the Chamberi neighbourhood, just off the busy Castellana avenue, it was the home in which the artist lived with his family from 1911 till his death in 1923. The house and all its belongings were bequeathed to the Spanish government by his widow Clotilde García del Castillo in 1925 who asked for a museum to be opened in memory of her husband.
In the museum, which opened in 1932 and which retains its original decor, you’ll find most of the objects Sorolla acquired throughout his lifetime including sculptures, ceramics, traditional clothes and jewellery, letters and photographs. It is also home to a remarkable collection of over 1200 of his paintings and drawings, which has continued growing since 1982 thanks to works purchased by the Spanish state.

I found a homepage where all of Sorolla’s works are seen together with his biography. He and his one-year-old younger sister were orphaned in 1865 and raised by their close family. With a background of losing both parents at a very young age, I find it remarkable that he had such an excellent career. He was very productive and archived great rewards for his work. He treasured his family life, too, and showed his audience examples of social injustice.


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