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Pedro Machuca

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Works Palace of Charles V, at Granada, Spain, 1527 to 1568.

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Biography Pedro Machuca

(b. Toledo, Spain 1485; d. 1550)

Pedro Machuca was born in Toledo, Spain in 1485. Accomplished in the manner of Raphael, Machuca worked exclusively as a painter in Italy and Spain until 1526 when he designed the arches and tableaux for a palace entryway. His success in this commission led to his appointment as architect of the new residence ordered by Charles V, the king of Spain.

Pedro Machuca gained fame as an architect through his work on the unfinished palace of Charles V in the Alhambra in Granada. This building exhibits a command of the High Renaissance style that was rare among non-Italian architects in the late 1520s. Whereas the component elements of his designs are surprisingly orthodox, his compositions are often without analogies in Italy until the mid-sixteenth century.

While few Mannerist features show clearly in his designs, his native tradition shows clearly in his receptivity to those Renaissance features with analogies in Spanish architecture. Pedro Machuca was surprisingly inventive within the classical mode and resolute in the maintenance of his severe High Renaissance style.

Adolf K Placzek. Macmillan Encyclopedia of Architects. Vol. 3. London: The Free Press, 1982. ISBN 0-02-925000-5. NA40.M25. p54.

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