|Inscribed: On stretcher: “N A 97”.
Provenance: Museum of the former Junta de Comerç. .
Came to the Academy's Museum: 1833.
Note: With only eleven years Maella moved to Madrid, where he studied drawing and shaped with Philip of Castro and registered in San Fernando's Academy. Rapidly he began to appear obtaining prizes in the general contests of 1754 and 1757 of the Academy of Madrid. Two years later he went to Italy to extend studies and once there he obtained a pension of the Academy of Madrid that allowed him to realize a study on Roman painters. In 1765 he returned to Madrid and was nominated an academician of San Fernando's merit. Under Mengs's direction he realized frescos for the Royal palace and later he remained also linked to the Royal Factory of Tapestries of holy Barbara. In 1774 he was nominated a painter of chamber.But his prestige increased even more when he was nominated the director of San Fernando's Academy and in 1799, with Goya, the first painter of chamber. Close to his numerous production of religious painting, so much to the fresco as of trestle, stands out the one that he realized as portrayer. With the arrival of Fernando VII, Maella was replaced as painter of chambe the one that had been one of his more brilliant pupils, Vicente Lopez.
The work is deposited in the Museu Frederic Marès of Barcelona by the number of inventory 3019. In the Royal Academy of San Fernando's Fine arts there is an equal picture, preparatory sketch (52 x 26 cm) of the final picture, which is not known. It was copied to the same format by the painter Josep Sancho Piqué, probably when he was a pupil of the School (from 1889). This copy remains in the Museum of Modern Art of Tarragona with the title of The St Lawrence.|