Union City High School Spanish Club visits The Hispanic Society of America
The Union City High School Spanish Club members visited the magnificent building on 155 and Broadway in New York City which holds a great exhibit of Spanish art with masterpieces such as Goya’s La Duquesa de Alba. Members of the club had a great educational as well as recreational time. Here they pose on the patio of the building with a monumental statue of El Cid as background. Yesterday the club hosted Dominican poet José Rodríguez, who presented his book Paraíso en la tierra. It was a truly an educating experience for the members of the club, most of whom study Spanish literature in our SNL III classes. We will have a report of Mr. Rodríguez presentation in this blog soon.
The most valuable piece of the museum is Goya’s controversial masterpiece La Duquesa de Alba, a magnificent painting that underlines the arrogance as well as the elegance of Spanish royalty. María del Pilar Teresa Cayetana de Silva Alvarez de Toledo became the 13th Duchess of Alba (one of the oldest and most influential noble houses in Spain) in the year 1776. Her marriage to José María Alvarez de Toledo y Gonzaga, 15th Duke of Medina-Sidonia made her and her husband the wealthiest couple in the Kingdom of Spain; their only rivals to this title were the House of Osuna. The Duchess’ relationship with famed Spanish painter Francisco Goya and her somewhat eccentric personality have contributed greatly to a continuing interest in her life during the two centuries since her death. Goya executed several well known portraits of the duchess, most of them during his stay at Sanlúcar de Barrameda (one of the Andalusian country seats of the House of Medina-Sidonia), shortly after the death of her husband, the Duke of Medina-Sidonia, in 1796.