Description of the picture:
Breakfast – Diego de Silva Velazquez. Around 1617. Oil on canvas. 108,5×102
The court painter of the king, Don Diego de Silva Velazquez, along with portraits of crowned persons and high-ranking grandees, also painted ordinary people: peasants and soldiers, regulars of taverns in the genre of “bodegones” (“zucchini, tavern”). With a special feeling, the artist creates small scenes from the life of the people that were characteristic of the early period of his work.
In the picture “Breakfast” the influence of the Italian Caravaggio is guessed, which affects both the choice of the plot and the use of sharp contrast lighting and black-and-white modeling of figures. Velazquez portrayed two cheerful young men, possibly soldiers, who invited their old tramp to his company. Similar scenes and types are often repeated in the artist’s work.
The work is based on the contrast of young, full of energy gesticulating young men with a more calm, wise life old man who listens carefully to them. This comparison is nevertheless filed very tactfully and unobtrusively. The still life in the foreground is distinguished by the severity and stinginess of objects, which was inherent in the Spanish masters. There is an assumption that the artist depicted himself in the image of a young man sitting on the right."