In the NY Times Ken Johnson suggests a time-tested recipe for success.”Fail at what you want to do, then do what you really can do. It worked for Luis Meléndez. He desperately sought appointment as a salaried court artist like his contemporary Francisco Goya, but his petitions to the king were rejected. So instead of producing unctuous portraits of nobles, grandiose history paintings and saccharine mythic scenes, he painted small, intensely realistic pictures of fruit, vegetables and kitchenware. Today he is considered the greatest still-life painter of 18th-century Spain.” Read more.
“Luis Meléndez: Master of the Spanish Still Life,” National Gallery of Art, May 17–August 23, 2009; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, September 23, 2009–January 3, 2010; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, January 31–May 9, 2010