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SANCHEZ COTÁN, Juan/ ARTISTS BEFORE 1650/ ART MAIN original lfff site
(b. 1561, Orgaz, d. 1627, Granada)     film and food  
Spanish painter. He was a still-life painter in Toledo until 1603, when he decided to become a monk, and in the following year he entered the Carthusian monastery at Granada as a lay brother. The religious works he painted after this date are unexceptional, but as a still-life painter he ranks with the great names of European painting. Characteristically he depicts a few simple fruits or vegetables, arranged on a ledge or shelf with an almost geometric clarity and standing out against a dark background (Quince, Cabbage, Melon, Cucumber). Each form is scrutinized with such intensity that the pictures take on a mystical quality, conveying a feeling of wonder and humility in front of the humblest items in God's creation. Sánchez Cotán's austere style had considerable influence on Spanish painting, notably on Zurbarán.

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A Mawlid Celebration in 14th Century Muslim Granada
Still-life
c. 1600
Oil on canvas, 69 x 85 cm
Museum of Art, San Diego
 
Sanchez Cotan studied in Toledo and here he established the prototype of the Spanish still-life composed mainly from vegetables. Later he joined the Carthusian Order as a lay-brother and painted only religious paintings which never reached the quality of his still-lifes.