b. 1628 Granada, Spain, d. 1688 Málaga, Spain
Sculptor Pedro de Mena y Medrano followed in the footsteps of his father, Granada's leading sculptor. Initially following his father's style, Mena changed direction when painter, sculptor, and architect Alonso Cano returned to Granada in 1652; Mena based his first important sculptures on figures by Cano. From 1656 to 1657, Mena carved four saints that had been commissioned from Cano, gaining Cano's trust and earning himself recognition.In 1658 Mena moved to Málaga permanently. Specializing in devotional images, Mena became renowned for his inventive poses and imagery. His varied treatment of the forty wooden relief panels depicting saints for the choir stalls at Málaga Cathedral made him famous. A trip to Madrid in 1662 introduced him to influential patrons who helped to keep him busy throughout his career. His assistants' numerous replicas of his sculptures testified to his popularity. For the Málaga Cathedral, Mena himself repeated the polychrome marble figures he had made of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella at prayer for the Granada Cathedral in 1677.
Study for a Statue