Maino, Juan Bautista


Maino, Juan Bautista
(1578-1641)
   Of Milanese and Portuguese descent, Maino was active in Spain in the courts of Philip III and Philip IV. The details of his training are not completely clear. Considered by most to have been one of El Greco's pupils, one 17th-century source states that Maino was a student and friend of Annibale Carracci, as well as a close companion to Guido Reni. By 1611, Maino is documented in Toledo where two years later he took vows at the Dominican Monastery of St. Peter Martyr. In 1614, Philip III called him to Madrid and appointed him drawing master to his son, the future King Philip IV. At court, he excelled in the area of portraiture, though he is best known for the religious canvases he created. Among these are the Adoration of the Magi and Adoration of the Shepherds (both 1612-1613; Madrid, Prado), both rendered for the Monastery Church of St. Peter Martyr. His most important commission is the Recapture of Bahia (1634-1635; Madrid, Prado) for the Hall of Realms in the king's Palace of El Buen Retiro, an event that took place in 1625 led by Count Duke of Olivares, whom Maino included in the painting. Here, Bahia is recovered from the Dutch who kneel in front of Philip IV's portrait. The wounded tended to in the foreground, modeled after traditional images of the Pietà, add an aura of sentimentalism and cast the victors as benevolent toward their enemies. In these works, Maino's style is closely tied to that of the members of the Carracci School in its choice of colors and idealization of forms, giving credence to the contemporary reports on his training in Italy.

Historical dictionary of Renaissance art. . 2008.

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