Maria Isabel of Braganza
(19 May 1797 – 26 December 1818) was the queen consort of Spain
from 1816 until her death. She married her maternal uncle King Ferdinand VII of Spain
as his second wife, and gave birth the following year to a daughter who died at four months old. A further pregnancy quickly followed, but she died during the subsequent difficult birth.
This oil-on-canvas portrait of Maria Isabel was painted by Bernardo López Piquer in 1829, ten years after her death. The artist had to rely on another painting (an oval-shaped bust portrait) created by his father Vicente López Portaña during her lifetime. It is likely that this official portrait was painted with the approval of Ferdinand VII, from which it is deduced that the king wanted to attribute to his late wife the foundation of the Museo del Prado in Madrid, visible through the window on the left, in which this painting now hangs.Painting credit: Bernardo López Piquer