Once used as a convent, the magnificent Seville Fine Arts Museum, or Museo de Bellas Artes in Spanish, has long been closed for restoration, and today is one of the most beautiful in all of Spain.
Located in a small square away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, the building dates back to 1594, although the major works were done during the 1600s, when the architect Juan de Oviedo directed the works, which included the demolition of the previous building built in Mudejar style.
It took nearly 100 years to complete the work, but once finished the building became one of the finest examples of Andalusian mannerism.
The property is built around 3 patios, decorated with flowers, trees and fine canvas work. The Museum of Fine Arts it was founded in 1839, after the "desamortizacion" of the monasteries and convents.
The building, in fact, as mentioned above, housed theOrder of the Merced Calzada, or of the Sisters of Grace, founded by San Pietro Nolasco during the reign of Ferdinand III of Castile.
Since the building was used as a museum, it has undergone three major interventions. The first, between 1868 and 1898, involved the restructuring of the arches and walls of the first floor. The second dates back to 1942-1945 and saw the opening of the patio de las Conchas. During the third and last intervention, dating back only to 1987, other interventions were undertaken to modernize the exhibition spaces.
The Museum's collection develops along dirty 14 and it was created mainly thanks to public and private donations of art objects, for the most part ecclesiastical. The museum is mainly dedicated to one Spanish collection of art and sculpture, which covers the ages ranging from the Middle Ages to the Modern Age, paying special attention to the artists of the Seville school, especially from the seventeenth century, a period in which it had its greatest expansion.
The ancient Church inside the Convent, now called Room V, it houses the works of the Seville School. Inside the Museum there is a very large section dedicated to the artists of the Baroque school of painting of Bartolome Esteban Murillo, Juan de Vales Leal and above all of Francisco de Zurbaran, the dominant artistic figure in the city at that time.
Do not miss the series of paintings dedicated to monasteries of San Paolo and San Domenico. Also in Room V, and then continuing up to Hall VII, you can admire the works of Murillo, these too are often works depicted with religious elements.
Here at the museum don't miss the disturbing work in wood by Torregiani, the sculptor, colleague of Michelangelo, famous for having broken the nose of the great Master and who ended his life in a prison in Seville.
To the collection of the School of Seville, the museum is then enriched with exhibition rooms dedicated to the works of great Spanish artists such as El Greco, Pacheco, Velàsquez and Alonso Cano.
The museum is located in Museum Square. Throughout the year, with the exception of summer, observe the opening hours 9.00 - 15.30. From 16 June to 15 September, the museum is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 9.00 to 20.30. Monday is closing day.
Admission for citizens belonging to the European Union is free, while for other visitors a small entrance fee of 1,50 euros is required. Upon request, private guided tours are available.
To get to the museum, as well as easily reach it on foot, you can think of taking an urban bus. Among the lines that have the closest stops are the C3, C4, C5, 6, 43, CC, 13, 14, B2 and B5.