Portrait of Fray Diego Deza
c. 1630
Francisco de Zurbarán (Spanish, 1598-1664)
On View

Father Diego Deza (1444-1523) was Archbishop of Seville, Grand Inquisitor of the Faith and Confessor at the Court of Ferdinand and Isabella. He was an influential patron and firm supporter of Christopher Columbus.

In 1517, Deza established the Dominican Colegio de Santo Tomás in Seville. In about 1630, the college commissioned Zurbarán to paint several major religious works as well as two posthumous portraits of its founder. (The second, identical version of this portrait is now in the Prado Museum, Madrid.) Zurbarán's juxtaposition here of intense light and deep shadow, his use of clear, distinct colors and sharp definition of forms are typical of his finest work.


  • Artist Name: Francisco de Zurbarán (Spanish, 1598-1664)
  • Title: Portrait of Fray Diego Deza
  • Date: c. 1630
  • Medium: Oil on canvas
  • Dimensions: 65-1/2 x 54-1/4 in. (166.4 x 137.8 cm)
  • Credit Line: The Norton Simon Foundation
  • Accession Number: F.1970.06.1.P
  • Copyright: © The Norton Simon Foundation

Object Information

Collegio Mayor de Santo Tomás, Seville (where it was hung in the cell of the Prior).
The Royal Alcazar, Seville (deposited 1810, Sala baja 2, no. 66, as Retrato de Fundador. Among those pictures Joseph Bonaparte had hoped to take to Paris, but was prevented from doing so).
Pérez de Acebo, Madrid; soon after 1900.
Virginia Gómez Pérez de Acebo, Madrid.
[David M. Koester, New York; sold 1/3 share 1951 to];
[M. Knoedler & Co., Inc. New York; jointly owned with Pinakos, Ltd., New York (1/3 share); stock no. A4509; sold 21 November 1957 to];
Assis Chateaubriand; sold 6 February 1958 to;
[M. Knoedler & Co., Inc., New York; jointly owned with Pinakos, Ltd., New York; stock no. A6997; sold 2 January 1970 to];
The Norton Simon Foundation.

Stora Spanska Mästare

  • Stockholm, Nationalmuseum, 1959-12-12 to 1960-03-13

Maîtres Anciens

  • Paris, M. Knoedler et cie, 1969-06-04 to 1969-07-31

Masterpieces of Five Centuries, Forty-Eight Paintings and Sculptures from the Norton Simon Foundation and the Norton Simon, Inc. Museum

  • Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, 1972-10-04 to 1973-11-04

Reinstallation of Galleries: Art History of the 17th and 18th Century Gains Fresh Dimension

  • Norton Simon Museum, 1993-09-02 to 1995-08-13
  • Young, Eric, The Connoisseur, fig. 6 pp. 182-183
  • Caturla, M. L.; and O. Delenda, Francisco de Zurbaran, nos. 48, 49 pp. 86, 108
  • Ponz, A., Viaje de España, vol. 9 p. 128
  • Apollo, pp. 120-121
  • Frati, T.; and M. Gregori, L'opera completa di Zurbaran, no. 83 p. 92
  • López-Rey y Arrojo, José, Archivo Español de Arte, p. 316
  • Augustin Cean-Bermudez, Juan, Diccionario histórico de los más ilustres profesores de las Bellas Artes en España, 1800, p. 48
  • Gonzales de Leon, F., Noticia artistica historica y curiosa de todos los edificios...de Sevilla, 1844, p. 131
  • Matute, J., Archivo Hispalense, 1877, p. 365
  • Gomez Imaz, M., Inventario de los cuadros sustraidos por el Gobierno intruso en Sevilla el año 1810, 1917, no. 66
  • de M. Carriazo, J., Archivo Españnol de Arte y Arquelogia, 1929, no. 26 p. 169
  • Soria, Martin S., The Paintings of Zurbaran, 1953, no. 19, fig. 14 pp. 7, 9, 137-138
  • Gaya Nuño, J. A., La pintura españnola fuera de España, 1958, no. 2984 p. 336
  • Guinard, Paul, Zurbarán et les peintres espagnols de la vie monastique, 1960, no. 328 pp. 190, 247
  • Gudiol, José and J. Gállego, Zurbarán, 1977, no. 44, fig. 55 pp. 55, 56, 78
  • Masterpieces from the Norton Simon Museum, 1989, p. 48
  • Campbell, Sara, Collector Without Walls: Norton Simon and His Hunt for the Best, 2010, cat. 720 p. 331
  • Heilbron, John L., The Ghost of Galileo in a Forgotten Painting from the English Civil War, 2020, Figure 62 pp. 374-375, p. 375 (ill.)

Additional Artwork by Artist

Saint Francis in Prayer Francisco de Zurbarán c. 1638-1639
Still Life with Lemons, Oranges and a Rose Francisco de Zurbarán 1633
The Birth of the Virgin Francisco de Zurbarán c. 1627

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