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3 December 2020 – 27 June 2021

Location: Room 30

Admission free

Rosalind Nashashibi, the 2020 National Gallery Artist in Residence, responded to the passion and emotional drama of the National Gallery’s 17th-century Spanish paintings.

From the start of her year-long residency, Nashashibi had the opportunity to work in the National Gallery’s on-site artist’s studio, benefitting from the close proximity to the Gallery’s collection.

‘An Overflow of Passion and Sentiment’ presented Nashashibi’s paintings alongside works of art by Diego Velázquez, Jusepe de Ribera and Francisco de Zurbarán.

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Nashashibi's interest lay in how the 17th-century paintings by these artists use figures and motifs to communicate their stories. Selecting elements from these historic works, alongside other sources including film, literature, art history and her own life story, the artist explored how motifs take on new meanings when placed in different contexts.

During her residency, the circular arena at the centre of Velázquez’s painting of boar hunting, known in Spanish as La Tela Real (‘The Royal Canvas’), took on particular significance for the artist. In her works, the idea of the canvas – both as a picture surface and as an arena – became a metaphor for painting as a stage for the imagination.

The National Gallery Artist in Residence is a collaboration with the Contemporary Art Society, generously supported by Anna Yang and Joseph Schull, who will acquire a work from the Residency for the National Gallery’s project partner, the Pier Art Centre, Orkney.

Programme sponsored by Hiscox

Rosalind Nashashibi catalogue
Own the catalogue of Rosalind Nashashibi, the inaugural artist in our new Artist in Residence programme. Special Gallery price £20.00.
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'Unexpected views'
Rosalind Nashashibi chats to curator Priyesh Mistry about Jusepe de Ribera
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A response to paintings in the collection

Nashashibi's interest lay in the way that paintings from the past communicate stories through figures, animals and objects.

'An overflow of Sentiment and Passion' displayed four paintings Nashashibi made in response to the Gallery’s 17th-century Spanish paintings.

It was the circular arena at the centre of Velázquez’s painting of boar hunting, known in Spanish as 'La Tela Real' (‘The Royal Canvas Enclosure’), that took on particular significance for Nashashibi. In her works, the idea of the canvas – both as a picture surface and as an arena – became a metaphor for painting as a stage for the imagination.