Pendant (Cleopatra or Leda and Two heads together) - Bilbao Fine Arts Museum

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Pendant (Cleopatra or Leda and Two heads together)

Durrio, Francisco

Valladolid, 22/05/1868-Paris, 30/08/1940

Chiselled silver

6.4 x 6.1 x 0.9 cm

Monogram (top right hand side)

c. 1895-1896 (replica by the artist, 1923)

Late 19th century


Acquired in 1924

Sculptor, goldsmith and potter, Francisco Durrio played a major role in spreading the synthetist word preached by Gauguin and his circle, who argued in favour of the subjective treatment of colour and greater intensity of expression as opposed to the mimetic representation of the real world. He trained in Bilbao, where his family settled shortly after the artist's birth, and Madrid, although in 1889 he moved to Paris. Many Spanish artists in the city came into contact with him, including Iturrino, Zuloaga, Echevarría, Hugué and Picasso. His admiration for Gauguin, with whom he had a close professional and personal relationship, was a key factor in the definition of his own art, which tends to combine elements from Modernism and Symbolism.

As a gold and silversmith, Durrio, who had first presented his jewels at the 1904 Paris Salon d'Automne, basically applied different types of burnishing to the two metals. He made buckles, rings, broaches, pins and necklaces, chiselled in silver, some with semi-precious stones, in which he recreated a range of ornamental motifs in the Modernist and Symbolist styles. [Miriam Alzuri] [María Amézaga]

Selected bibliography

  • El Modernismo en España [Cat. exp.]. Madrid, Dirección General de Bellas Artes, Comisaria General de Exposiciones, 1969. p. 135, n° cat. X-15.
  • Pintores y escultores vascos de ayer, hoy y mañana. Bilbao, La Gran Enciclopedia Vasca, 1975. p. 309.
  • Bengoechea, Javier de. Catálogo de arte moderno y contemporáneo del Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao. Bilbao, Banco de Vizcaya, 1980. p. 181. (Con el título Broche).
  • Barañano, Kosme María de ; González de Durana, Javier. "El escultor Francisco Durrio, 1868-1940 : epistolario, catálogo y notas sobre su vida y obra", Kobie : bellas artes, n° 5. 1988. p. 172.
  • Un siglo de joyería y bisutería española, 1890-1990 [Cat. exp.]. Palma de Mallorca, Govern Balear, 1991. p. 466. N° cat. 1654
  • Escultores y orfebres : Francisco Durrio, Pablo Gargallo, Julio González, Manolo Hugué [Cat. exp.]. Valencia, Bancaja, 1993. pp. 102, n° cat. 11.
  • Lasterra, Crisanto de. "En París con Paco Durrio", Urtekaria 1993 : asterlanak, albistak = Anuario 1993 : estudios, crónicas. 1994. p. 75.
  • El jardí fantàstic : joieria modernista a les col.leccions europees [Cat. exp.]. Barcelona, Fundació ”la Caixa”, 2004. pp. 76, 130.
  • Joyas de artista : del modernismo a la vanguardia [Cat. exp.]. Barcelona, Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya, 2010. pp. 189, 304. N° cat. 192
  • Francisco Durrio, 1868-1940 : sobre las huellas de Gauguin [Cat. exp.]. Bilboko Arte Ederren Museoa-Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2013. p. 130, n° cat. 87.