In the sixteenth century Spain was at the height of its glory, enjoying a period of exceptional power, wealth, and artistic splendor. In 1561 Philip II commissioned Europe's leading topographical artist, Anton van den Wyngaerde, to prepare cities and towns of his Golden Age empire. Van den Wyngaerde spent most of his time traveling in Spain from 1561 until his death in 1571, preparing views—many the earliest known depictions—of no fewer than sixty-two cities and towns, including Barcelona, Valencia, Zaragoza, Granada, Córoba, Seville, Toledo, Burgos, and Madrid. These drawings not only record Spain's cities during the most glorious moments in their history but also depict them with a precision that can almost be described as photographic.
Cities of the Golden Age The Views of Anton Van den Wyngaerde
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