The Best Selling Painting By Gerardo Murillo: A Story Of Art And Devotion
El Cuadro Mejor Vendido by Gerardo Murillo: A Lesson in Art Appreciation
El Cuadro Mejor Vendido, or The Best Selling Painting, is a short story by Gerardo Murillo, a Mexican painter and writer who also used the pseudonym Dr. Atl. The story was published in 1936 as part of a collection of stories titled Cuentos de Todos Colores (Stories of All Colors). The story tells the tale of a generous artist who sells his masterpiece for a very low price to a poor old lady who admires his work.
The Best Selling Painting by Gerardo Murillo: A Story of Art and Devotion
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Summary of El Cuadro Mejor Vendido
The story begins with the artist painting a beautiful landscape of Anáhuac, a valley in central Mexico that was once the heart of the Aztec civilization. The artist captures the contrast between the rugged mountains, the volcanic cones, and the cactus-covered hills with the soft light that defines and shadows everything. He is standing next to a small adobe house in Santa María de Aztahuacán, a sleepy and dirty village inhabited by serious and gentle people, like their Aztec ancestors.
When the painting is finished, the owner of the house, a poor old lady who lives in a shack that the artist also depicted, approaches him and asks if she can look at it. She compares it with the real scenery and comments that it is more beautiful in the painting than in Gods creation. She says that maybe the artist has put his intelligence into it, as God gave him. The artist thanks her and asks if she likes it. She says she does and wishes she could have it. The artist then offers to sell it to her for five pesos.
The lady smiles, clasps her hands in a devout gesture, and says with emotion that she has the five pesos, but she wonders how he can give it to her for so little. She says that it must have cost him a lot of work and paint, and that he must have spent more than five pesos on transportation alone. She suggests that they make a deal: she gives him the money and he lets her keep the painting for a few days, just to look at it. The artist insists on selling it cheap. The lady takes him to her house, takes out a clay pot from a chest and counts out some coins of silver, nickel, and copper. She gives him the five pesos and says that it took her a lot of effort to save them, but she still has seventeen cents left for candles, so she can see it day and night, because she will never get tired of looking at it.
The artist puts the five pesos in his pocket, thanks her, and leaves whistling, sure that in that gray adobe house, his painting is more honored and glorious than in the most famous art gallery in the world.
Analysis of El Cuadro Mejor Vendido
El Cuadro Mejor Vendido is a simple but touching story that explores the themes of art appreciation, generosity, and irony. The story shows how art can transcend material value and connect with peoples emotions and spirituality. The artist is not motivated by money or fame, but by his passion for painting and his respect for his admirer. He does not care about selling his painting for a high price or displaying it in a prestigious gallery. He values more the sincere appreciation of the old lady who sees beauty in his work and shares his vision of the landscape.
The old lady is also an example of generosity and gratitude. She does not take advantage of the artists offer or try to bargain with him. She pays him what he asks for without hesitation, even though it is almost all her savings. She also shows reverence for his painting by hanging it on her wall and lighting candles for it. She expresses her joy and wonder at having such a treasure in her humble home.
The title of the story is ironic because it implies that the painting was sold for a high price or to many people. However, it was sold for very cheap and to just one person. But this does not diminish its value or quality. On the contrary, it enhances it because it shows that the painting was sold to someone who truly loved it and understood its meaning. The title also suggests that this was the best sale the artist ever made, not in terms of 04f6b60f66