Around 40 years ago, in the early 70s’, I was living in Spain. At that time I was single and the only thing in my mind was painting. I supported myself as a visual artist by taking on all kind of art commissions: landscapes, portraits, copies, etc. Through my dear friend Jordi Annel Zubero, a fellow artist, i received a commission to paint two portraits. I was living in Madrid and this commission made it possible for me to get a hotel room, in Zamora. The commission came at a good time, for at that momment I had enough time to paint (a little over two months). I painted every day, one portrait in the morning, and the other portrait in the afternoon. During my stay at Zamora I was able to meet few people and made some friends. One day they told me the story of the fly. I asked them to show me the painting for i thought they were pulling my leg. This is what happened: In Zamora, Spain, there is a church, kind of a museum, and they had this painting “La Virgen de la mosca” (The Virgin with a fly) it is a small oil painting on wood. The scene is very serious and is painted in the traditional style of the period. The story my friends told me is this, there is a very realistic fly that is painted on the red mantle of the Virgin. The anecdote that is told in relation to painting is that when the painting was received, as a gift to the church, a cardinal or somebody very high in the hierarchy of the church, was trying to chase the fly away from the mantel. Such action made everyone around laugh out loud.
Also, here is a cool video on the city of Toro, Zamora. It is in Spanish, but nonetheless you can still see of its beautiful architecture:
Furthermore, if you would like to learn more about, try a google search of this:
La Virgen de la Mosca at the Colegiata de Toro, Zamora Spain