The Young Velázquez “The Education of the Virgin” Restored John J. Marciari, Carmen Albendea, Ian McClure, Benito Navarrete Prieto, Aniko Bezur, Jens Stenger

Publication date:
08 Jan 2015
Yale University Art Gallery
76 pages: 286 x 203mm
40 color + 7 b-w illus.
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Donated to the museum in 1925, the Yale University Art Gallery’s Education of the Virgin—depicting Saint Anne teaching a young Virgin Mary to read—was long considered to be a work by an unknown Spanish artist. Considerably damaged, the painting was relegated to storage and never carefully studied until 2005, when John Marciari reattributed the work to Diego Velázquez (1599–1660), the most significant painter of the Spanish Golden Age. The extraordinary narrative of this painting and its reattribution is chronicled here, accompanied by a detailed description of the painting’s conservation campaign and thoughtful analysis of the artist’s technique.

John Marciari is the Charles W. Engelhard Curator and Head of the Department of Drawings and Prints at the Morgan Library and Museum, New York. Carmen Albendea and Ian McClure are conservators at the Yale University Art Gallery. Anikó Bezur is director of scientific research at Yale University's Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage. Jens Stenger is associate conservation scientist at Yale University's Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage. Benito Navarrete Prieto is a professor of the history of art at the University of Alcalá and the director of cultural infrastructure and heritage for Seville City Council.