This artist all his life was somehow connected with the Catholic Church. He was born in a monastery house and died, trying to complete the altar canvas for the Capuchin monastery in Cadiz. This is not surprising when you consider that he was born and lived all his life in Spain, the faithful stronghold of the most fanatical Catholicism. Nevertheless, in the paintings of this master, biblical and church characters appear as real people from blood and flesh, their image is so bright and vivid.
Bartolome Esteban Murillo was born in 1617 and very soon became an orphan, brought up in the family of his aunt by mother. His artistic abilities showed up early and he began to learn mastery from Juan de Castillo, as a result, adopting his specific style of painting. But acquaintance with other famous artists of that time, in particular, with the great Diego Velazquez, opened for him the world of art with its rich color palette and free painting. There is no trace of Murillo’s constrained manner. The canvases of his early creative period delight the eye with a wealth of colors and luxurious color combinations. Returning from Madrid to his native Seville, the artist received a large order to create a series of paintings for the monastery of the Order of the Franciscans. This time can be considered the beginning of the era of his prosperity as an artist.
In the personal life of the master, everything was also safe. He successfully married and became the father of five children. A happy marriage and a successful personal life contributed to the constant progress in work, over the years he creates the vast majority of his paintings, which later became famous. But the death of his wife in 1664 makes adjustments to his life and the rhythm of his work immediately slows down.
However, receiving a new major church order revives it to life both as a person and as an artist. Starting next year, he not only works on new paintings, but even lives in a monastery. He worked and lived in it, imbued with the spirit of monasticism and at the same time creating an extensive altar wall.
An interesting fact from the artist’s biography - he was admitted to the Brotherhood of Holy Mercy, an organization that contained the Hospital of Mercy - a monastery for the elderly single people. And the Brotherhood was headed at that time by a man who is considered the prototype of the poetic Don Juan - Miguel de Manyara, a friend of the master.
For the work performed, the Brotherhood handed over to the artist a substantial amount, but even here he did not change his position in life. Throughout his life, the poor artist was far from striving for luxury and lived quite modestly and moderately. He even let loose his slave.
Even the death of a master is involuntarily connected with religion. When he was already 65 years old, and this is an advanced age in those days, he agreed to work in Cadiz, although for many years he did not leave Seville. During the creative process, he fell from the woods and crashed.
The artist died in his homeland, in Seville, in 1682, never recovering from a fatal fall. After his departure, a huge artistic heritage remained - many paintings on religious subjects, a cycle of genre paintings, landscapes and landscapes, as well as the Seville school of painting founded by him, which for many years influenced the work of numerous painters in Spain and other countries.