Sorolla and America Symposium: Part One


Sorolla and America Symposium: Part One


Meadows Museum

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Joaquín Sorolla first came to the notice of North American collectors in the early 1890s, and his work must surely have been known to Archer Milton Huntington, founder of The Hispanic Society of America, from at least 1900, when Huntington attended the Exposition Universelle at Paris where Sorolla won a Grand Prix. However, it was not until his visit to Sorolla’s 1908 exhibition in London that Huntington began acquiring works by the artist. The initial encounter led to preparations for an exhibition of Sorolla’s works at The Hispanic Society in New York in February 1909 – an astonishing success with nearly 160,000 visitors in four weeks – and a subsequent itinerant exhibition in 1911. With sales from the exhibitions, portrait commissions, and Huntington’s 1911 commission for the series of large mural canvases called Vision of Spain (1912-19), Sorolla not only became a wealthy man, but arguably the best-known Spanish artist of his time internationally. This lecture will outline the history of Sorolla’s connections with the The Hispanic Society and attempt to answer a series of questions: What was the secret of Sorolla’s success in America? What attracted Archer Huntington and many American critics and collectors to Sorolla’s art? What was Sorolla’s impact on American art, on Huntington, and on The Hispanic Society itself?

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sorolla, museum studies


Art and Design | Painting


Delivered by Marcus Burke, Senior Curator, Museum Department, The Hispanic Society of America

Sorolla and America Symposium: Part One