20 Feb Guitar Hijos de González 19th century: Deciphering the mystery
The following can be read on the label:
ROMAN AND BASS STRINGS, GUITARS FROM 40 TO 12000 REALES (AN OLD SPANISH CURRENCY).
AWARDED WITH THE 1ST CLASS MEDAL IN PARIS UNIVERSAL EXHIBITION IN 1867.
He offers his customers a wide variety of guitars,
bandurrias, violins, and more stringed instruments, in a new and elegant way, and made
through his own system ; among all the nations
which have presented this kind of instruments,
this one has been the only one of its kind obtaining
this Award, due to its advancement.
15 Carrera de San Gerónimo Street
Francisco González died in 1879, and his first daughter, Concepción, became a guitar maker. The business would be moved to 33 Carretas Street, where it would continue until 1927, although during this period it would be called “HIJOS DE GONZÁLEZ” (Gonzalez´s sons). Shocking as it may sound, (he did not have any sons, but only daughters), it was the traditional way it was done back then. In 1927, Concepción passed away.
The following could be read on the label:
Awarded by Sociedad Matritense in 1866.
And in Zaragoza´s Universal Exhibition, 1868.
HIJOS DE GONZÁLEZ
AWARDED WITH THE 1ST CLASS MEDAL IN PARIS UNIVERSAL EXHIBITION IN 1867
33 Carretas Street,
However, what would provide this guitar with something special and priceless is the oil on the top, by Juan Martínez Abades. He was a painter born in Gijón, Asturias, in 1862, and he died in Madrid in 1920. Abades became specialized in seascape painting. In 1888 he obtained a sponsorship from Oviedo´s provincial government to continue his studies in Rome, where he would remain until 1890. When he returned he settled in Madrid, and he travelled to the coast from time to time, so as to paint there. In the same year he returned, he presented the National Fine Arts Exposition his painting “El Viático a bordo”, which is currently part of El Prado´s collection. He also took part in some expositions of The Fine Arts Circle, collaborating as an illustrator in Blanco y Negro, and composed cuplés. In most of his biographies, Abades is ignored as a musician and poet. It looks as if the cuplé, considered a minor genre, was incompatible with his extraordinary career as a painter.
To my most distinguished friend Adriaensens
Best Regards, J. Martínez Abades
To my good friend Fco. de Adriaensens
A memento from Sivares [Xivares] Abades
The recipient of this dedicatory, and owner of the guitar was probably Francisco de Adriaensens Alcaraz, born in 1862, just like the painter. His wife´s name was Paulina García-Vidal Rayneri, and his son, Francisco Adriaensens y García-Vidal, Captain of artillery.
In the next postcard we will be able to see Paquita Escribano, who performed “Mimosa”, a cuplé written by Juan Martínez Abades in 1917, with a guitar similar to the one which Solera flamenca owns, with the top acting as oil on wood.
Santiago Míguez de la Rosa.