Celebrating 1863~1923: Sorolla Centennial at the Hispanic Society Museum & Library




Sorolla Gallery

The Hispanic Society Museum & Library is honored to commemorate the centenary of the passing of Joaquín Sorolla (1863–1923), an artist whose name and legacy remains inextricably linked to the history of this institution. Sorolla was a renowned Spanish artist, whose work was highly regarded in Europe and the Americas in the early twentieth century. Born in Valencia, he was orphaned early in life and raised by his aunt and uncle, who recognized his artistic talent and arranged for his training in painting and drawing from the age of nine.

The Hispanic Society Museum & Library commemorates the great Spanish artist Joaquín Sorolla (1863-1923) with a series of three concerts titled Joaquín Sorolla and his Vision de España—A Centennial Series:  The Musical World of the Artist ~ June 30, 2023 at 5:00pm.

Close-up in Sorolla Gallery

Sorolla honed his skills in Madrid, studying the works of the old masters and Goya at the Prado, and eventually received further training in Rome in the early 1880s and in Paris in 1885.

Close-up in Sorolla Gallery

The HSM&L is also commemorating the Venezuelan artist Jesús Rafael Soto (1923–2005), who was born the same year that Sorolla died. This double centennial symbolically unites two geniuses through their respective works in the Main Court. The Hispanic Society is committed to celebrating the heritage and creativity of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking worlds, making it the perfect context for this extraordinary encounter.

You can visit the Centennial exhibition from May 25, 2023 – July 16, 2023. Free admission.

Image credit: Alfonso Lozagno

Organized in tandem with the celebration of Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida’s Centennial (1923-2023), Jewels in a Gem: Luz Camino at the Hispanic Society Museum & Library, features the inspiring works of Spanish high jewelry designer Luz Camino who celebrates her 50 years career anniversary.  Her colorful, multiform creations, rooted in Spanish culture and heritage, offer great parallels to and eloquent dialogues with the approach and universe of Sorolla, from whom Camino occasionally took inspiration. Camino’s pieces are present in many important private collections around the world, as well as in major museums such as the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, and now the Hispanic Society.

Jewels in a Gem: Luz Camino. Image credit: Alfonso Lozagno

Jewels in a Gem: Luz Camino will be open to the public  from May 25, 2023 – September 3, 2023.  Free admission.

The exhibition is curated by Guillaume Kientz, Fernando Tapia. The Exhibition Designer is Sasha Nixon.

Jewels in a Gem: Luz Camino has been made possible by the generous support of  The Board of Trustees of the Hispanic Society, Luz Camino, Ms. Tiqui Atencio Demirjian, anonymous donors and lenders.

The Hispanic Society of American entrance on the Audubon Terrace

Audubon Terrace, Outdoor Exhibition Space ~ This outdoor area allows the Museum to connect directly with the community by creating a place for vibrant and inclusive experiences as well as allowing the Museum to present outdoor exhibitions, Hispanic and Latin American music performances, and workshops for children.

Archer Milton Huntington at age 20. Image via hispanicsociety.org

Archer Milton Huntington, founder of the Hispanic Society, commissioned the paintings in 1911 for a new gallery to be built on the west side of the main building. Sorolla already had been the subject of two enormously successful traveling exhibitions in the United States organized by the Hispanic Society in 1909 and 1911. The 1909 exhibition alone attracted some 160,000 visitors to the Hispanic Society in a period of one month.

Sorolla Gallery

Nearly 12 feet tall and 200 feet in combined length, the canvases that comprise Vision of Spain were painted by Sorolla at various locations in Spain between 1912 and 1919. Within the gallery the viewer is surrounded by the peoples, costumes, and traditions of various regions of Spain.

Close-up in Sorolla Gallery

Both Sorolla and Huntington noted that the series represented a Spain that was already “on the point of disappearing”. Unfortunately, the paintings that Sorolla considered his greatest work were not inaugurated at the Hispanic Society until 1926, three years after the artist’s death.

Close-up in Sorolla Gallery

All of the canvases were restored in 2006-2007 prior to an exhibition tour in Spain. Sorolla’s Vision of Spain was exhibited in Valencia, Seville, Málaga, Bilbao, Barcelona, and Madrid between November 2007 and February 2010. Never before on public view in Spain, Sorolla’s masterwork created a sensation that attracted over 2,000,000 visitors, making it the most visited exhibition in Spain’s history. The fully renovated Sorolla Vision of Spain Gallery was inaugurated in 2010 upon the return of the paintings.

The Hispanic Society of America founded in 1904. Photo, AFineLyne, 2012

The Hispanic Society of America was founded in 1904 by Archer Milton Huntington (1870-1955) with a view toward establishing a free, public museum and reference library for the study of the art and culture of Spain, Portugal, Latin America and the Philippines.

Interior of Hispanic Society of America

The Society houses more than 900 paintings and 6,000 watercolors and drawings. among the works on paper, 15,000 prints afford a unique view into the graphic arts in Spain from the seventeenth to the early twentieth century. More than 175,000 photographs from 1850 through the early twentieth century document the art, culture and customs of Spain and Latin America.

The Library at Hispanic Society of America

The Library offers unrivaled resources for researchers interested in the history and culture of Spain, Portugal, Latin America, and the Philippines, with more than 300,000 books and periodicals, including 15,000 volumes printed before 1701, along with over 250,000 manuscripts, letters, and documents dating from the 11th century to the present.

American Academy of Arts & Letters

The Hispanic Society often holds free concerts. Check their calendar of events for upcoming dates. While you’re there, walk by the American Academy of Arts and Letters (image below) located at 633 West 155th Street, NYC

The Hispanic Society Museum & Library is located on Audubon Terrace, Broadway between 155th & 156th Streets, NYC. The museum is open Thursday to Sunday from Noon to 5:00pm.

Follow the Museum on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Read more about its founder, Archer Milton Huntington.

2 thoughts on “Celebrating 1863~1923: Sorolla Centennial at the Hispanic Society Museum & Library

  1. Elsewhere, this morning, I was advised of a concert of Spanish music connected to the work of Sorolla this evening at 5. There is not a word about it on your web site.

    1. Yes. We are delinquent in getting that information out. Our post has been updated. Thank you for bringing that to our attention.

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