Spanish Word of the Day Archive
Tuesday December 11, 2007

retrato, noun:

Spanish and Latin American painters have created a great tradition of portrait painting, from El Greco to Picasso in Spain, and from Fernando Botero in Colombia to Frida Kahlo in Mexico. The famous museum in Madrid, Spain, El Prado, held a major exhibition called:

El retrato español
The Spanish portrait

Just as in English, un retrato can be used in a non-literal sense to refer to a depiction or a portrayal of a time or place:

El libro es el retrato un de una época y sus personajes.
The book is a portrayal of an era and its personalities.

Of course, many artists like to paint not only retratos of other people, but also autorretratros, self-portraits. Frida Kahlo’s mysterious self-portraits are particularly famous, for instance, Autorretrato con mono Self-portrait with Monkey, that is in New York.

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