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Last Updated: Feb 19, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts
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With the help of a teacher from my former school, Mrs. Bounsom, I collected a set of links for you on your Spanish-speaking artists.  We suggest you start with these links because they contain the types of biographical and art information that will be useful for your project. 

Use this as a chance to fall in love with your artist-- no matter what you think of their artistic aesthetic all of these artists were bold visionaries whose creations challenged the world to consider new ideas.  When you are writing your presentation script try to remember that these are all real people-- they had families, fell in love, were poor, made money, moved, experienced triumphs and felt the pain of tragedy, had famous and not-so-famous friends, attended dinner parties and at times lived in isolation, were controversial and well-respected, and through it all used art as an outlet for their ideas. 

Challenge yourself to tell your artists' story in a way that will make your audience members admire him.

Buen suerte!


Brief Bio Tips

All people have fascinating lives full of interesting events!  But, for this project FOCUS is important.  When taking notes on your artist make sure that your notes relate the artist's life story to his art! For example, Frido Kahlo married another famous artist, Diego Rivera.  Each influenced the other's artistic work, so her marriage is important to her artist biography.  Joan Miro, on the other hand, married Pilar Juncosa who isn't really considered a major influence on his work.  So, for this project, you probably wouldn't mention much, if anything, about Miro's marriage.

Here are a few suggested topics to include:

When was the artist born?  Where? Where did he work?

Was he influenced by where he lived?--By the landscape, the culture, or the politics of a region?

What artistic movement(s) did he participate in over his lifetime? 

Did he help create or influence any particular artistic movements?  How?

What were the themes of his art?  What led him to focus on these themes? 

   Ex. Some of Kahlo's work shows the conflict between Mexican and American ideals- influenced by her life in the US in the 1930s when she became dissatisfied with capitalism.

What were his artistic influences?  Other artists, personal events, political events?

What makes his art recognizable/memorable/unique/distinct?

Did his artistic style change over time (distinct periods, shifts in subjects or styles?)


WorldBook Online in Spanish

WorldBook Online in Spanish is a great resource for biographical information on many of your artists.

To access: OE Library website

   - Select "Encyclopedias" webpage

      - Select "World Book Advanced"

         - Select "Enciclopedia Estudiantil Hallazgos" as the World Book edition that you want to search


Salvador Dali

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library (from library "Databases" page) has several biographies in English

La Persistencia de Memoria info from Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

The Hallucinogenic Torreador info from The Dali Museum

In Spanish:




Info on La ultima cena (The Last Supper)

Info on La Persistencia de Memoria

Video: YouTube: Since the district internet filter blocks YouTube (sorry!) you'll have to watch this at home

1 min. 30 sec. slideshow of his art (painting titles not included)

And, just because it's Ms. McNerney's favorite Dali piece:

And this particular color version is from the Tate Modern museum in London (a great museum if you are ever there!)


Francisco Jose de Goya y Lucientes

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library (from library "Databases" page) has several biographies in English

Biography AND reference to El 3 de Mayo and La Familia de Carlos IV

In Spanish:



Specific info about La Familia de Carlos IV

Video: YouTube- Sorry, this is blocked by the district internet filter-- but you can watch it at home!

Five minute art slideshow (no painting titles included)

Eleven minute 30 second video in Spanish


El Greco- Domenikos Theotokopoulos

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library (from the "Databases" page of the library website) has several biographies

Biography with specific references to La Vista de Toledo and El Entierro del Conde de Orgaz

In Spanish:



Information about San Martin y el Mendigo

Information about El Entierro del Conde de Orgaz  IS THIS THE RIGHT PAINTING?

Video: YouTube is blocked by the district filter (sorry!) so you'll have to watch these at home. 

Three minute thirty sec. painting slideshow (no titles included)

Five minute thirty sec. video in Spanish


Joan Miro

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library on the "Databases" page of the library website has several biographies

Joan Miro Foundation/Museum in Barcelona.  On left sidebar click "Joan Miro" for biographical materials.

Interviews with Miro and Hemingway about La Granja (The Farm)

Biography and a little about La granja and Blue II|A%3AAR%3AE%3A1&page_number=1&template_id=6&sort_order=1&section_id=T058574#skipToContent

A little about Blue II when it was on exhibit with other pieces from the series in London

In Spanish:


Videos: Joan Miro Foundation/Museum in Barcelona has several videos with biographical and art information Videos- lots of bio and art in English:

Video on the painting of La Granja (in English)


Bartolome Esteban Murillo

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library on the "Databases" page of the library website has several biographies

In Spanish:


Information about La Familia Sagrada

Information about Los ninos de la concha

If La Concepcion  is really Immaculada Concepcion de los Venerables


Pablo Picasso

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library has several biographies. 

   The biography from the book Europe 1789...Encyclopedia makes specific references to La Familia de los Saltimbanquis

Biography and information on art with specific reference to Guernica

Information on El Viejo Guitarrista

Information on Los 3 Musicos

In Spanish:

Biography and information on art

Biography and two links to information about Guernica specifically

Video: Not sure if you can view here at school or not!

Fifty-one minute biography in Spanish


Diego Rodriguez de Silva y Velazquez

In English:

Gale Virtual Reference Library (from "Databases" page of library website) has several biographies

      In particular “Velazquez” in Spanish Painting 17th Century  references Las Meninas

Biography with some information about art

In Spanish:



Information on Las Meninas

Information on Las Hilanderas

Information on Las Lanzas

Video: Since the district's filter blocks YouTube (sorry!) you'll have to watch this video from home

Four minute video slideshow of paintings (no titles included)

Podcast: In Spanish podcast about La Fragua de volcano

Subject Guide

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Shelly McNerney

Descriptive Analysis of Paintings Tips

Don't just describe the art.  For example-- using my favorite Dali piece pictured on the left--- do not just say, "This is a sculpture of a black vintage telephone.  The main portion of the phone has a circular rotary dialing mechanism.  The handset portion of the phone is black and enclosed by an lobster rendered in various shades of orange."  Duh-- anyone can see this when they look at the art. 

Instead explain how the art represents the typical work of your artist.  Example:

Dali's famous work, The Lobster Phone represents surrealism because it takes a modern, technological object-- a black telephone-- and combines it with an unexpected wildlife representation- a realistic orange lobster.  Like much of surrealism, this art piece plays with ideas of reality by forcing users to speak into a lobster for communication, a rather absurd idea.  There are stories that Dali was inspired by a dinner party in which a discarded lobster tail was haphazardly flung onto a telephone, but he himself has said that he has never understood why telephones, which he finds to be, "frightfully warm and disagreeably sticky to the touch" are not kept surrounded in ice in silver buckets like lobster tails. This piece also represents Dali because several of his other works also include lobsters, which is hypothesized to have had symbolic meaning for him.

In writing your analysis consider what makes your artist's work unique including (but not limited to):




Reoccuring shapes/objects/figures




Your Opinions

There is no right or wrong answer here- but support your opinion with an explanation.

Bad: "I find Kahlo's work interesting."

Better: "I find Kahlo's work interesting because she uses intensely personal subjects and emotions in her self-portraits, but she brings in her opinions on modern issues like politics through the objects that are included in the portrait's settings- like flags to symbolize her support for political movements."


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