• Artist: London Symphony Orchestra - Teresa Berganza - Jose Carreras

    Album: Manuel de Falla - La Vida Breve

    ACTO I

    Escena Primera

    (La escena representa el corral
    de una casa de gitanos
    en el Albaicín de Granada.
    Al fondo una puerta por la que se vé el negro interior
    de una Fragua,
    iluminado por los rojos resplandores
    del fuego)

    ¡Ande la tarea,
    que hay que trabajar!

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  • A crowd has gathered outside a bookshop and lottery agency in Amsterdam's Kalverstraat. It is 25 October, 1779, and the sale of lottery tickets for the 66th General Lottery has begun. Men, bent on obtaining a ticket, push and shove around the entrance. The eighteenth-century architectural painter, Isaak Ouwater, has depicted the event in great detail. However, Ouwater has filled in much of the picture with windows and the red bricks of the houses - a highly unusual composition. Ouwater was commissioned to paint this work by Jan de Groot, the owner of the bookshop and lottery agency.

    Title The Bookshop and Lottery Agency of Jan de Groot on Kalverstraat in Amsterdam
    Year 1779
    Artist Isaak Ouwater
    Technique Oil on canvas
    Dimensions 38,5 x 33,5 cm

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  • Title The Bodies of the De Witt Brothers, Hanged at Groene Zoodje on Vijverberg in The Hague

    Artist Jan de Baen

    The 'Groene zoodje' on Vijverberg in The Hague, was, for a few days in August 1672, silent witness to this gruesome scene. Two naked bodies are hanging with their feet tied to the gallows. The belly of the body on the left has been ripped open. It is night time and the bodies are illuminated by a burning torch. These are the bodies of the De Witt brothers, Cornelius and Johan. Both played prominent roles in the Stadholderless Period (1651-1672). As the pensionary, Johan had been the most powerful statesman in the Republic for a long time. In the disaster year of 1672, their time was up, once and for all: Johan and Cornelius de Witt were lynched by a mob in The Hague.

    Johan De witt

    His pro-French policy however would prove to be his undoing. In the Dutch rampjaar (disaster year) of 1672, when France and England during the Franco-Dutch War (Third Anglo-Dutch War) attacked the Republic, the Orangists took power by force and expelled him. Recovering from an earlier attempt on his life in June, he was assassinated by a carefully organized lynch "mob" after visiting his brother Cornelis de Witt in prison. He was decoyed into this trap by a forged letter.

    After the arrival of Johan de Witt the city guard was sent away to stop plundering farmers, the farmers were not found. Without any protection against the assembled mob the brothers were doomed. They were taken out of the prison and on their way to the scaffold killed. Immediately after their death the bodies were mutilated and fingers toes and other parts were cut off. The heart of Cornelis de Witt was exhibited for many years next to his brother's by Dirck Verhoeff[citation needed].
    Nowadays most historians assume that his adversary and successor as leader of the government stadtholder William III of Orange was involved. At the very least he protected and rewarded the killers.

    Year c. 1672-1702


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  • Title Prometheus Being Chained by Vulcan, Year 1623

    On the floor in a smithy lies Prometheus.
    The gods' smith, Vulcan, is fastening handcuffs on him.
    Filled with pity, the messenger of the gods, Mercury watches this happening.
    Van Baburen has presented this story from Greek mythology in all its
    dramatic power and significance.
    Prometheus, his face creased in anguish, churns the air with his arms.
    The treatment of light and the life size figures reflect the influence
    of the Italian painter Caravaggio.

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  • Artist  Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn  Year 1633

    Rembrandt painted this portrait of Saskia Uylenburgh in 1633. She was twenty years old at the time and had just become engaged to Rembrandt. They were married a year later. Saskia was the niece of the art dealer Hendrick Uylenburgh, in whose house Rembrandt lived in Amsterdam. Rembrandt had moved to Amsterdam in 1631 where he remained for the rest of his life. From the moment he arrived he received many commissions for portraits, producing more than fifty in the first year alone.

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