The Museo del Prado is a museum and art gallery located in Madrid, the capital of Spain. It features one of the world’s finest collections of European art, from the 12th century to the early 19th century, based on the former Spanish Royal Collection. Founded as a museum of paintings and sculpture, it also contains important collections of other types of works. A new, recently opened wing enlarged the display area by about 400 paintings, and it is currently used mainly for temporary expositions. El Prado is one of the most visited sites in the world, and it is considered to be among the greatest museums of art. The principal attraction takes root in the wide presence of Velázquez, Francisco de Goya (the artist more extensively represented in the collection), Titian, Rubens and Bosch, of that it possesses the best collections that exist on a global scale. The collection currently comprises around 7,600 paintings, 1,000 sculptures, 4,800 prints and 8,200 drawings, in addition to a large number of works of art and historic documents.
By 2012 the Museum will be displaying about 1300 works in the main buildings, while around 3,100 works are on temporary loan to various museums and official institutions. The remainder are in storage. The best known work on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez. Velázquez not only provided the Prado with his own works, but his keen eye and sensibility was also responsible for bringing much of the museum’s fine collection of Italian masters to Spain.
It is known as a part of the “Golden Triangle of Art”, which also includes the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museumand the Reina Sofia galleries.
Official Website: www.museodelprado.es/aprende/enciclopedia
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