Pedro Berruguete

Born in Paredes de Nava around 1445, he was baptised in this church of Santa Eulalia, the same place where his son Alonso was also baptised.

Although his artistic training was largely influenced by the strong presence of the late Gothic style, he managed to assimilate the Renaissance trend. He worked in Italy for the Duke of Urbino, decorating part of the study cabinet in his palace, and his is the magnificent double portrait of Federico de Montefeltro and his son Guidobaldo in the Galleria Nazionale delle Marche in the Ducal Palace in Urbino.

His Italian experience was enormously enriching, as it enabled him to become acquainted with the great artists of the Quattrocento and to assimilate the most innovative painting techniques. On his return to Spain he focused almost exclusively on religious painting. He must have lived regularly in his native town, where he had a studio. He executed works for the collegiate church of Santa María del Campo in Burgos, worked on the cathedral of Toledo and in his last period he painted the main altarpiece of the convent of Santo Tomás and the cathedral altarpiece in Ávila.

It is not known where he died, although it was probably in Madrid in 1503 or 1504.

His artistic output has been defined on the basis of the four documented works that have survived: the main altarpiece of the church of Santa Eulalia in Paredes de Nava, from around 1490; the mural painting of the exterior of the chapel of San Pedro in Toledo cathedral, from 1497; the main altarpiece in Ávila cathedral, documented from 1499 and left unfinished at his death; and the altarpiece in Guaza de Campos (Palencia), documented in 1501, of which only the representation of the Salvator Mundi remains.

His Flemish training and his assimilation of Italian art are clearly evident in all his creations, not to mention the influence of the Gothic painting dominant in Castilla, where he had most of his patrons. This is why his paintings sometimes depict Renaissance architecture, while in others we find Gothic or Mudéjar elements.

Alonso Berruguete

Alonso Berruguete has gone down in history as one of the most brilliant artists of the Renaissance. The son of Pedro Berruguete, it seems that he was born in Paredes de Nava around 1488.

The death of his father prompted him to follow in his father's footsteps, beginning a training that even took him to Italy. In Rome and Florence he was able to contemplate the outstanding works of classical antiquity and the great artists of the time such as Leonardo da Vinci, Donatello, Raphael and, above all, Michelangelo.

On his return to Spain he was appointed royal painter by Emperor Charles V and was commissioned to paint the tomb of Chancellor Selvaggio in Zaragoza, his first documented work.

In 1523 he obtained the office of notary public in the Royal Chancery of Valladolid. It was then that he settled in Valladolid and opened his workshop. His first major contract that same year, together with the sculptor Vasco de la Zarza, was for the high altar of the Hieronymite convent in La Mejorada de Olmedo. A few years later he was commissioned to build the main altarpiece for the church of San Benito el Real in Valladolid, where his greatest achievements were obtained. His last major works in Toledo were the stalls in the cathedral and the tomb of Cardinal Tavera in the church of the Hospital of the same name.

Alonso Berruguete died in Toledo in 1561 and, although he hardly worked for his native town, his mark can be seen in the magnificent Calvary that crowns the main altarpiece of this church and in the beautiful image of the Virgin and Child that is unanimously attributed to him by critics.

His work exerted a great influence on his contemporaries and in his workshop he had some outstanding disciples such as Francisco Giralte, whose hand is on the main altarpiece in the church of San Pedro de Cisneros, now in the Territorial Museum of Campos del Renacimiento.