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The III Duke of Alba Images of Power through His Garden of La Abadía

Thu, March 22, 2:00 to 3:30pm, Hilton Riverside Complex, Chart Room C

Abstract

The garden of the “La Abadía” (Cáceres) of the III Duke of Alba, was one of the most celebrated Spanish Renaissance exponents of the 16th century. This residence, where important monarchs like the Catholic Monarchs, Juana of Castile or Philip II rested some periods, was looted by poets like Garcilaso de la Vega or Lope de Vega, as well as by scholars like Antonio Ponz. The Duke´s garden, made by Flemish and Italian artists, recreated the old classical villas with their beautiful fountains, sculptures, portals and reliefs. The Duke wanted to imitate Antiquity not only by the ornamentation of the garden, but also with erudite conversations with other figures of the Court, humanists, scholars and artists of the moment, as well as with parties in which music and hunting played an important role. The purpose of this procedure was to reinforce their power message by using Antiquity as a claim.

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