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Diego Velazquez - Las Meninas (detail)Las Meninas (detail)Diego Velazquez

This baroque painting is considered one of the most important of all-time. The central figure is the young Margarita Teresa of Spain but the painting also shows the artist himself, an image of the king and queen, several servants, two dwarfs, and a dog.

Museo del Prado (Madrid, Spain)
Caravaggio (Michelangelo Merisi) - The MusiciansThe MusiciansCaravaggio (Michelangelo Merisi)

Trained in Lombardy, Caravaggio moved in 1592 or 1593 to Rome, where he initially made his reputation with a number of realistic paintings of half-length figures. This picture dates from about 1595 and was painted for his first great patron, Cardinal Francesco del Monte. Although it was described by...

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (United States)
John Singleton Copley - Watson and the SharkWatson and the SharkJohn Singleton Copley

Copley and Brook Watson became friends after the American artist arrived in London in 1774. Watson commissioned him to create a painting of the 1749 event, and Copley produced three versions. It was the first of a series of large-scale historical paintings that Copley would concentrate on after sett...

National Gallery of Art (Washington, United States)
Diego Velazquez - Las Meninas (The Maids of Honor) or the Royal FamilyLas Meninas (The Maids of Honor) or the Royal FamilyDiego Velazquez

Las Meninas (Spanish for The Maids of Honour) is a painting of the Spanish Golden Age. The work's complex and enigmatic composition raises questions about reality and illusion, and creates an uncertain relationship between the viewer and the figures depicted. Because of these complexities, Las Menin...

Museo del Prado (Madrid, Spain)
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