Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Baltasar de Echave

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Catholic Encyclopedia (1913), Volume 5
Baltasar de Echave

by Augustus Van Cleef

Echave, Balthasar de, painter, b. at Zumaya, Guipuzcoa, Spain, in the latter part of the sixteenth century; d. in Mexico about the middle of the seventeenth. As there was a painter of the same name, thought to be his son, he is known as Echave the Elder. He was one of the earliest Spanish artists to reach Mexico, arriving at about the same time, near the end of the sixteenth century, as Sebastian Arteaga and Alonzo Vasquez. He was then a young man, and there is a tradition that his wife, also a painter, was his instructor. Echave, whose subjects are chiefly religious, had especial skill in composition, and his best works, which have much charm of color and tenderness of treatment, are thought to recall those of Guercino. In the galleries of the National Academy of San Carlos, in the City of Mexico, there are some of his best pictures, notably "The Adoration of the Magi", "Christ in the Garden", "The Martyrdom of San Aproniano", "The Holy Family", "The Visitation", "The Holy Sepulchre", "Saint Ann and the Virgin", "The Apparition of Christ and the Virgin to San Francisco", "The Martyrdom of San Ponciano", and "Saint Cecilia". In the church of San Jose el Real, generally known as the "Profesa", are several others, including "St. Isabel of Portugal", while he executed for the church of Santiago Tlaltelolco fifteen altar-panels. In the cathedral is his "Candelaria" and a "San Sebastian", believed to be by his wife. Among the smaller paintings of Echave is one of San Antonio Abad with St. Paul, the first hermit. The artist also had a reputation as an author, among his works being one on the Biscayan language.

AUGUSTUS VAN CLEEF