Carreno de Miranda, Juan (Spanish, 1614-1685)

The Monster Nude or Bacchus


Reference Type:
Artwork
Image:
Carreno.Monster.jpg
Year:
1680
Notes/Description:
The Spanish court was fascinated by physical abnormalities, and kept people with conditions such as dwarfism as figures for entertainment, rather like pets. This five-year-old girl from the seventeenth century suffered from Cushing’s disease, and weighed more than 150 pounds. Her given name was Eugenia Martinez Vallejo, but she was nicknamed “The Monster.” If she had not had this condition, we would never have heard of her—it was so unusual that she was taken to the royal court in Madrid as a freak, and then painted by the king’s court painter, naked as well as clothed. Notes by Mariann Smith
Keywords:
Art
Child
Disability
Disease
Psycho-social Relationships
Collection:
Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid