For five centuries the Alba family of Spain has proven to be one of the most important lineages in Europe. The Albas exercised considerable influence in all facets of life, military, political, and social, including cultural patronage and art collecting. More than 130 objects by the biggest names in art history from the Alba family collection are illuminating one Dallas museum.
Fra Angelico, Titian, Goya, Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Ingres, Renoir, and Sargent are only a few of the names one can expect to find during a star-studded exhibition of the Alba family collection. On view now at the Meadows Museum on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, “Treasures from the House of Alba” is sure to dazzle. Presented thematically, the exhibition will trace the prominent family’s most significant periods of collecting and patronage, from their roots in 15th-century Spain through the 20th century. As a result, viewers will experience an incredible range of styles and mediums across the full spectrum of the art historical canon.

Francisco de Goya, “Portrait of the Duke of Alba,” ca. 1795, oil on canvas, (c) The Art Institute of Chicago 2015

The museum reports, “The exhibition displays a broad selection of works by artists that, as such, are leaving Spain for the first time and groups them, also for the first time, in a manner that explains the historical development of the family and the collection from the end of the 15th century to the present day. It is the first exercise in the understanding of the history of this family, shown through a vast display of more than 130 objects.”

Pierre Auguste Renoir, “Girl with Hat with Cherries,” 1880, oil on canvas, (c) Alba Family Collection 2015

“Treasures from the House of Alba: 500 years of Art and Collecting” opened on September 11 and will show through January 3.
To learn more, visit the Meadows Museum.
This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

Previous articleDancing with Degas
Next articleMedusa Unearthed
Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here