Un “escalante” en Cardiel


En la iglesia de Santiago Apóstol de Cardiel hay un cuadro de Juan Antonio de Frías Escalante o, según firmaba, Juan Antonio Escalante (Córdoba, 1633 – Madrid, 1669), pintor barroco español del Siglo de Oro. El cuadro en cuestión se llama “El Bautismo de Cristo”, es un óleo de 1,60 por 1,90 m que data aproximadamente de mediados de 1600, fruto de la colaboración del propio Escalante con su maestro Francisco Rizi y forma parte de una serie de obras que realizó en la provincia de Toledo, entre las que se encuentran el “San Juanito con el cordero“ de la parroquia de Santa María en los Yébenes y el San Juan Bautista y la “Matanza de los inocentes” conservados en la cripta de la Catedral.

No se sabe exactamente cómo llegó el cuadro a Cardiel, ya que por aquel entonces, ni siquiera existía la iglesia actual, sino una modestísima ermita, lugar improbable para una pintura de uno de los pintores más prometedores del Siglo de Oro español.

Hay que decir, que actualmente hay veinticuatro lienzos de Escalante en el Museo del Prado, la mayoría procedentes de distintos conventos madrileños.

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