La Virgen de la Leche
24.75" x 18.5"
Framed: 35.375" x 33.5"
Painting, oil on copper
Region: Bolivia
Attributed to the School of Potosi, Alto Peru
(Influenced by Gregoria Gamarra)

Gregorio Gamarro (1570?-1642) was a Bolivian painter for the Tetiary Franciscan Order in Potosi (1601) and principal follower of Bernardo Bitti (1548-1610), a Jusuit who travelled from Seville to Lima in 1576. The pattern of the Virgin's mantle is based upon Gregorio Gamarra's Holy Family with St. John the Baptist, ca. 1612 in a Private Collection, La Paz (see Mesa and Gisbert, Holguin, Pl. 34). The floral garland encasing the mother and child is of Flemish origin, specifically from Plantin Press engravings after devotional works by Rubens and Jan "Velvet" Brueghel. Many devotional paintings of the nursing Virgin with a garland were created by Bolivian artists; the encircling roses also characterize the "Virgin of Pomata". Amoung them, this work is of exceptional quality.