Immaculate Conception

This image formed part of the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception and must date back to the late 17th century. It was most likely the item inventoried in 1695 in the oratory of the house of Tomás José de Velasco and his wife, Ana María de Jauregui y Unzueta, patrons of the aforementioned chapel at the time. On the death of Tomás José de Velasco, the carving must have apparently been moved to the family chapel where he was to be buried. An altarpiece that no longer exists was created around 1780, and this particular Immaculate Conception was positioned there as its eponymous image, accompanied by the images of Saint Teresa and Faith on its side panels.

The Immaculate Conception is depicted as the new Eve, treading on the serpent, symbolising sin, at her feet. Her body is stylised in a posture of yearning, with her head tilted backwards looking up at the heavens. Her face is soft-featured and rounded, with a half-open mouth and large glass eyes. Her long, wavy hair cascades over her shoulders. Her hands are folded at chest level in a fervent attitude. As is common, she is dressed in a white tunic and blue cloak with pronounced folds and frills. She is crowned by an aureole of ten stars and her body is ringed by a halo of golden rays and lightning bolts. The figure rests on a double-height octagonal base with winged heads. The artist undoubtedly based its execution on a Neapolitan carving or Italian engraving.


Ficha técnica

  • Author: Anonymous
  • Date: End of the 17th century
  • Technique: Polychrome stone carving
  • Measurements: 99 x 50 x 30 cm
  • Place: Saint Mary’s Cathedral (Vitoria-Gasteiz). Chapel of the Immaculate Conception


TABAR ANITUA, Fernando. Barroco importado en Álava y Diócesis de Vitoria-Gasteiz: Escultura y Pintura [cat.]. Vitoria-Gasteiz: Diputación Foral de Álava, 1995, pp. 81-83.

BARTOLOMÉ GARCÍA, Fernando R. “Fundación de la capilla de la Concepción de la catedral Santa María de Vitoria”, Ars Bilduma, n.º 2, 2012, pp. 15-34.

BARTOLOMÉ GARCÍA, Fernando R. “La capilla de la Concepción de la catedral Santa María de Vitoria bajo patronato de los Velasco”. Ars Bilduma, n.º 7, 2017, pp. 109-127.