Cano, Alonso

Cano, Alonso

(älōn`sō kä`nō), 1601–67, Spanish baroque painter, sculptor, and architect. Cano studied under Pacheco and received painting and architecture commissions from King Philip IV. He was named chief architect of the cathedral at Granada. His architectural masterpiece is the design for the cathedral facade (1667), erected after his death. Cano executed both the sculpture and paintings for his monumental altarpieces and did independent religious pictures and portraits for the cathedral. Examples of his paintings are Descent into Limbo (Los Angeles County Mus.); Way to Calvary (Worcester Art Mus., Mass.); and Portrait of an Ecclesiastic (Hispanic Society of America, New York City). His sculptures, including statues of saints in Granada Cathedral, were executed with vigor and sensitivity.


See study by H. E. Wethey (1955).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Cano, Alonso


Baptized Mar. 19, 1601, in Granada; died there Sept. 3, 1667. Spanish sculptor and painter, representative of the baroque style.

Cano began studying under J. Moñténes and F. Pacheco in Sevilla in 1616. He worked there until 1637. He subsequently worked in Madrid, Valencia, and Granada (from 1652). Maintaining the traditions of painted wooden sculpture, Cano’s polychromatic sculptures are imposing and are characterized by subtle spirituality and eloquent expressiveness. Examples of his sculpture are the retables of the Church of Santa Maria in Le-brija (near Sevilla, 1628–38) and the statues and busts of saints in the Granada Cathedral (1658–60). Cano’s paintings, which are characterized by idealization of forms, external prettiness, and Italian artistic influences, are less distinctive than his sculptures. His paintings include The Virgin Presenting the Infant Christ to St. Anthony (1645–52, Prado, Madrid) and the series Seven Joys of the Virgin (1652–64, Granada Cathedral). In 1703, Cano’s design for the western facade of the Granada Cathedral was carried out by the architect J. Granados.


Wethey, N. E. Alonso Cano. Princeton, 1955.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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