Alonso Berruguete: First Sculptor of Renaissance Spain

  • Visual arts
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Sun, Oct 13, 2019 —
    Mon, Feb 17, 2020
Alonso Berruguete: First Sculptor of Renaissance Spain

The National Gallery of Art hosts the first major exhibition held outside Spain to celebrate the expressive art of the most important sculptor active on the Iberian Peninsula during the first half of the 16th century, Alonso Berruguete.

Alonso Berruguete, active on the Iberian Peninsula during the first half of the 16th century, initially trained as a painter before becoming known for his painted sculptures in wood. The exhibition will present an impressive range of more than 40 works from across his career, including examples of his earliest paintings from his time in Italy, where he trained. His abilities as draftsman will also be celebrated with the largest group of his drawings ever to be assembled.

The primary focus is on his painted sculptures in wood, which generally decorated large altarpieces, or retablos. The Museo Nacional de Escultura in Valladolid, Spain, lends a substantial group of some of his very best figures. A section of one of his altarpieces is loosely reconstructed in the exhibition to convey an idea of how his sculptures were originally seen.

A fully illustrated catalog accompanying the exhibition will be the first general book on Berruguete published in English and will feature essays by Dickerson as well as Manuel Arias Martínez, deputy director, Museo Nacional de Escultura, Valladolid, and Mark McDonald, curator of Italian, Spanish, Mexican, and early French prints and illustrated books, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Lectures on Friday, November 15: a group of professional speakers will talk about the artist, his work and the historial context, from 11 am to 3:30 pm. View program (PDF).


Venue map

The National Gallery of Art, Constitution Ave NW, Washington, DC 20565


Free. The NGA offers free talks about the exhibition by museum educators and specialists on November 8, 20 and 22 at 1 pm; November 26–27 at 1 pm; December 2–4 at 1 pm; and December 10, 12, 18 at 11 pm

More information

National Gallery of Art


Presented by The National Gallery of Art in Washington, and the Meadows Museum in Dallas, in collaboration with the Museo Nacional de Escultura in Valladolid, with the support of the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain in Washington, D.C. Curated by C. D. Dickerson III, curator and head of sculpture and decorative arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington. Image: Sacrificio de Isaac by Alonso Berruguete (photo by Museo Nacional de Escultura)



Don't miss events like this one! Subscribe to our bimonthly newsletter to stay informed. Our subscribers also get exclusive access to select online content such as free screenings or concerts.

Sign up for our newsletter