In this painting, Anunciación, a theme on which Murillo created several works, the figures appear static, with somewhat theatrical gestures but with little expression in their faces. The harmonious but somewhat muted colouring and the backlighting effect of the luminosity that radiates from the Holy Spirit towards that imprecise space in which the Virgin Mary is found contribute to this. In contrast, we find simple objects: the prayer-kneeler, an open book for meditation, a spray of lilies carried by St. Gabriel, symbolising the purity and virginity of Mary, and the basket with needlework. The painting depicts the crimson pillow, the white cloth, the shroud and, grabbing our attention, the needle with a thread already threaded, an example of Murillo’s subtlety as a painter of still lifes.


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