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LA ROLDANA, the first spanish woman who became the Spanish Court sculptress

LA ROLDANA, the first spanish woman who became the Spanish Court sculptress

The environment of Spain in the late years of XVII century was completely amazed when she got married by his own decisión, not with the family’s consent, and she continued to amaze them in every step she made to her emancipation. The courage of Luisa Ignacia Roldán allowed her to become the first spanish sculptress officially recognised.

Luisa Ignacia Roldán Villavicencio (Seville, 8 of september 1652​ – Madrid, 10 of january  1704), popularly known as La Roldana, she was the first registered sculptress from the Baroque era in Andalucia at the end of the XVII century and the first years of the XVIII century.

​Her famous career reached the highest point since Antonio Palomino recognised her work as important as his father’s Pedro Roldán work.

She was formed in sculpture influenced by his father, she worked in his studio until she got married in 1671.

Her sculpture work was based on religious motives, following the tutelage of Concilio de Trento, trying to humanize the art of the images to bring the religion to the people. She made actual size sculptures to carry during Procesiones made of wood or clay with polychrome. Some of these sculptures are called “de candelero” or “to get dressed” and some others were made for little religious groups, convents and monasteries. Her sculptures were full of expression, great movement and expressiveness. Her work also covered the sculptures of some italian style “belenes” made of clay which were Christsmas’ visual displays put together in a group of sculptures.

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After this student stage and her first works made in Seville, in 1686 she moved out to Cadiz to work for the City Council and the Church Administration.

After living two years in the ancient capital of Andalucia, she travelled to Madrid, where she worked as a sculptress for the Court of Carlos II and Felipe V until the day she died.

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