Juan Carreño de Miranda

(Aviles, Asturias, 1614 – Madrid, 1685)

Doña María de Vera y Gasca

ca. 1670

oil on canvas

199.7 x 139.5 cm

Inv. no. 446

For some time, this portrait was believed to be the work of Juan Bautista Martínez del Mazo (1611-1667) due to the evident influence of Velázquez —the curtain and the handkerchief draped over the skirt, taken directly from the one from Infanta Margarita in the Prado— but its thicker and denser construction is closer to the production of Carreño de Miranda, as noted by Jesús Urrea, Ismael Gutiérrez Pastor, and Alfonso E. Pérez Sánchez. The treatment of the handkerchief draped in folds over the dark skirt decorated with embroidered bands is similar to the treatment in the portraits of the Marquesa de Santa Cruz (1665-1670) by Carreño or of Inés de Zúñiga, Marquesa de Monterrey, held in the Museo Lázaro Galdiano.

The curtain and the friar chair state the economic and social status of the portrayed, and the folds of the red curtain carry echoes of the Venetian school.

This is a very significant piece for the period due to the severe and grave attitude of the figure and the intensity of the gaze, curious and almost questioning, and it could be dated around 1670.

The portrayed, wife and heiress of  Don Juan González de Uzqueta and founder of the Convento de las Carmelitas Descalzas of Boadilla del Monte, is depicted standing, wearing a lavish black gown with a
under the skirt, which is decorated with bands embroidered in silver.