Bosch Masterpieces Will Stay at the Prado Says Director

Hieronymus Bosch, The Seven Deadly Sins (1500-1525) Photo: Courtesy Museo del Prado

“I never had any doubts that the Hieronymus Bosch works would stay in Museo del Prado,” the Spanish museum’s director, Miguel Zugaza, told Radio Nacional recently.

The strong declaration was aimed at stopping the rumors that have surrounded the forthcoming launch of the Museo de las Colecciones Reales in Madrid in 2016 (see “Prado Being Stripped of Bosch and Tintoretto Works?”). According to these rumors, the new museum would receive four masterpieces from the Royal Collections, which have been displayed at Museo del Prado for almost 80 years.

Hieronymus Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights (1503-1504) and The Seven Deadly Sins (c. 1500), Tintoretto’s Christ Washing the Disciples’ Feet (1548-49), and Roger van der Weyden’s The Descent from the Cross (c. 1435) were all given to Museo del Prado for protection at the onset of the Spanish Civil War in 1936. They have been displayed in the institution since then, and are among its most popular exhibits.

Speaking on the Spanish national radio, Zugaza explained that the four masterpieces: “belong, or have belonged, to the Royal Collections. But they have been at the Prado since the beginning of the [Civil] war and have become part of it. Not just because of the amount of time they have spent in our collection, but because they are in the best possible context to be appreciated and understood.”

According to El País, the Spanish government is in the process of finalizing the legal documents that will ensure that the masterpieces remain at Museo del Prado.

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