MURILLO, Bartolomé Esteban
(b. 1617, Sevilla, d. 1682, Sevilla)

Boys Eating Grapes and Melon

Oil on canvas, 146 x 104 cm
Alte Pinakothek, Munich

A journey to Madrid in about 1643 enabled Murillo to study the Venetian and Flemish paintings forming part of the royal collections. Otherwise, he remained permanently in Seville, his native city, and his life was a simple one, free of serious problems. By 1645 his style had hardened in its final mold, as may be seen in the paintings executed about this time for the Franciscans, with the first of those figures of rascals and beggars in which he was to specialize. This is the spirit, for example, of the Boys Eating Melon, in Munich, and the Boy, in the Louvre, which is a study in yellowish ochers and browns.