Colnaghi Foundation Journal 01 - Page 55

De Leito’s testament of 11 July 1663 (A.H.P. Madrid,
prot. 9084, fols. 345r-346v) was first published in Peter
Cherry, Arte y naturaleza. El bodegón español del Siglo de Oro
(Madrid: Doce Calles, 1999), p. 539, doc. XXI, and
discussed pp. 237-240. In recent correspondence with
the editors, Dr Cherry points out that as the will records
De Leito as being “enfermo” or ill at the time, he may
have died soon after it was drawn up. See also Fernando
Collar de Cáceres, “Andrés De Leito: revisión pictórica,”
Anuario del Departamento de Historia del Arte 20 (2008): pp.
97-98, where the document is transcribed in full.
Juan Augustin Céan Bermúdez, Diccionario de los más
ilustres profesores de la Bellas Arte en España, vol. III (Madrid:
1800), p. 34.
In his biography of Cerezo Palomino states: “He
also painted small still lifes, with such superior
excellence that none surpassed him, although some
equalled him; including those by Andrés De Leito,
who produced excellent ones at this court.” (Pintó
también bodegoncillos, con tan superior excelencia,
que ningunos le aventajaron, si es que le igualaron
algunos; aunque sean los de Andrés de Leito, que en
esta corte los hizo excelentes). Antonio Palomino, “El
Parnaso español pintoresco laureado,” in El Museo
pictórico y Escala óptica (Madrid:1715-1724, ed. Aguilar,
1947), p. 978. It should be noted that Palomino was
in Madrid by 1678, and so he could well have known
De Leito if the latter was still alive in 1680. Ceán
Bermúdez, Diccionario, p. 34, turns Palomino’s phrase
around, stating that “Leyto was outstanding in still
lifes, in which few surpassed him.” (Leyto se distinguió
en los bodegones, en que pocos le aventajaron).
“Lo pintó conjuntamente con Josef Saravia, con
mejor gusto de color que corrección de dibujo, y con
sobrada manera.” Ceán Bermúdez, Diccionario, p. 34.
The improbable identification of this painter as the
Sevillian José Sarabia is his. Antonio Ponz, Viage de
España, X, c. VIII (Madrid: 1787), p. 248.36, limits
himself to stating that it was painted by a certain
Andrés de Leyto and completed by another artist
called Sarabia.
“Hice diferentes pinturas a ynstancias del padre fray
hernando de la Rúa guardian que fue del convento de
S franco de Segovia, y en dha ciudad, y retocado de
lo qual me deue cantidad de mrs mando se ajusto (sic)
y se cobre la cantidad que me esta deuiendo.” AHN,
Clero, libro 12673, “Cartas Quentas.” See Cherry, Arte y
naturaleza, p. 237, note 130.
Palomino, “El Parnaso español,” p. 976. For Gil de
Mena, see E. Valdivieso, Pintura en Valladolid en el siglo
XVII, Valladolid, 1971, and various publications by
the Museo Nacional de Escultura de Valladolid, with
particular reference to the paintings in the monastery of
San Francisco in Valladolid. See the new edition: Jesús
Urrea and Enrique Valdivieso, Pintura barroca vallisoletana
(Seville: Universidad de Sevilla and Universidad de
Valladolid, 2017), pp. 273-309 (for Felipe Gil de Mena).
He also stipulates that Ángel de las Heras (probably
his brother-in-law) should be sent one of his own
paintings which he kept in his studio, the choice of
which he left to his wife. See Cherry, Arte y naturaleza,
p. 539, and Collar de Cáceres, “Andrés De Leito:
revisión,” pp. 97-98.
According to the documents that the present author
has been able to trace, it was the building next to the
so-called Casa de la Cadena.
On this see Collar de Cáceres, “Andrés De
Leito:revisión,” p. 81.
There is a second, altered, date. The monogram
ANLF should be read as Andrés (de) Leito Fecit. Today
known as Deleito, he clearly signed his name as De
Leito in the only known document, and was referred
to as such by Palomino.
This work allows the Carreño-like Belshazzar’s Feast
(Massachusetts, Private Collection) to be attributed to
De Leito due to the technical and figurative treatment
of the foreground and background.
Alfonso Emilio Pérez Sánchez, La Nature Morte spagnole
du XVIIe siècle à Goya (Paris: Vilo et Office Du Livre,
1987), p. 127, points out similarities in this sense with
Cecco Bravo, Livio Meus and Orazio Fidani.
Above, on another stone, is an old man or possibly a warrior.
See Collar de Cáceres, “Andrés De Leito: revisión,”
p. 96. The same figurative components are to be seen
in a still life that appeared on the art market with an
attribution to Félix Lorente.
Rafael Romero has undertaken a technical analysis
of these paintings, finding unusual details of a sketchy
preparatory application of paint in the scene of Autumn.
See Rafael Romero Asenjo, El bodegón español del siglo
XVII; desvelando su naturaleza oculta (Madrid: Icono I&R,
2009), pp. 377 and ff.
See Cherry, Arte y naturaleza, pp. 238-240. Woman with a
swan is only known from poor photographs.
Cherry, Arte y Naturaleza, p. 226.
Diego de Estella, Libro de la vanidad del mundo (Toledo:
1562, ed. Salamanca, 1574), bk. IX.
See Ingvar Bergström, Dutch Still-Life Painting in the
Seventeenth Century (New York: Hacker Art Books,
1956), pp. 153ff; Jean Bialostocki, “Arte y Vanitas,”
in Estilo e iconografía: Contribución a una ciencia de las
artes (Barcelona: Barral Editores, 1973), pp. 185-214;
Alberto Veca, Vanitas. Il simbolismo del tempo, exh. cat.
(Bergamo: Galleria Lorenzelli, 1981), p. 72; and, for a
particular analysis of the different types, Alain Tapié,
ed., Le Vanités dans la peinture au XVIIe siècle. Méditation
sur la richesse, le dénuement et la rédemption, exh. cat. (Caen:
Musée des Beaux-Art, 1990).
Estella, Libro de la vanidad, bk. II.
For a partly opposing interpretation, see Pérez Sánchez,
La Nature Morte, p. 128. He understands the mirror
as a symbol of Prudence, the portrait as a positive
allusion to love tokens, and the book as an expression
of wisdom.
This work is wholly unlike the style of Pereda, whose
signature is always defined with meticulous precision in
his works and quite differently, given that he was illiterate.
On this and the attribution of the painting, see Collar
de Cáceres, “Andrés De Leito: revisión,” p. 92. Enrique
Valdivieso González, Vanidades y desengaños en la pintura
española del Siglo de Oro (Madrid: Fundación de Apoyo a la
historia del arte hispánico, 2002), p. 90, mentions that it
has the date of 1665, which is now not visible.
An attribution to De Leito of the Vanitas considered to
be by him in the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San
Fernando in Madrid must be rejected. It is quite different
in compositional, spatial, chromatic and visual terms.
One of the canvases is signed and has the characteristic
). If there was
monogram (andxea De Leito /
a signature on the second, which now has some
repainting, it seems to have been erased.
With thanks to Amalia Descalzo for clarifying this.
According to William B. Jordan and Peter Cherry, El
Bodegón español de Velázquez a Goya (Madrid: Ediciones El
Viso, S.A., 1995), p. 99, it is a muslin veil and a symbol
of modesty.
Previously in a private collection in the Canary Islands.
It was presented in the exhibition Vanitas at Colnaghi,
London, October 2016.
The recently restored version in Herrera de Pisuerga
follows the one in the Museo de Arte Sacro de Corella,
although the physiognomy of the figure differs.
On this see Louis Réau, Iconographie de l’art chrétien, III,
vol. 2 (Paris: Presses universitaires de France, 1958), p.
748. The letter attributed to Jerome affirms that both
awake and asleep he was constantly startled by the
sound of this trumpet.
See in particular Fernando Collar de Cáceres, “Andres
De Leito, The penitent Saint Jerome,” in Spanish
Painting (Madrid: Coll & Cortés, 2012), pp. 206-212.


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