Francisco Goya

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Francisco Goya
Vicente Lopez Portana - el pintor Francisco de Goya.jpg
Portrait of Goya by Vicente López Portaña, c. 1826. Museo del Prado, Madrid
Born(1746-03-30)30 March 1746
Died16 April 1828(1828-04-16) (aged 82)
Bordeaux, France
NationalitySpanish
Known for Painting, drawing
Movement Romanticism
Yard with Lunatics, c.  1794 Courtyard with Lunatics by Goya 1794.jpg
Yard with Lunatics , c. 1794

Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes ( /ˈɡɔɪə/ ; Spanish:  [ f ɾ a n ˈ θ i s k o   x o ˈ s e   ð e   ˈ ɣ o ʝ a   i   l u ˈ θ j e n t e s ] ; 30 March 1746 – 16 April 1828) was a Spanish romantic painter and printmaker. He is considered the most important Spanish artist of the late 18th and early 19th centuries and throughout his long career was a commentator and chronicler of his era. Immensely successful in his lifetime, Goya is often referred to as both the last of the Old Masters and the first of the moderns. He was also one of the great contemporary portraitists. [1]

Romanticism period of artistic, literary, and intellectual movement that started in 18th century Europe

Romanticism was an artistic, literary, musical and intellectual movement that originated in Europe toward the end of the 18th century, and in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to 1850. Romanticism was characterized by its emphasis on emotion and individualism as well as glorification of all the past and nature, preferring the medieval rather than the classical. It was partly a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the aristocratic social and political norms of the Age of Enlightenment, and the scientific rationalization of nature—all components of modernity. It was embodied most strongly in the visual arts, music, and literature, but had a major impact on historiography, education, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. It had a significant and complex effect on politics, with romantic thinkers influencing liberalism, radicalism, conservatism and nationalism.

Printmaking process through which an artistic print is created

Printmaking is the process of creating artworks by printing, normally on paper. Printmaking normally covers only the process of creating prints that have an element of originality, rather than just being a photographic reproduction of a painting. Except in the case of monotyping, the process is capable of producing multiples of the same piece, which is called a print. Each print produced is not considered a "copy" but rather is considered an "original". This is because typically each print varies to an extent due to variables intrinsic to the printmaking process, and also because the imagery of a print is typically not simply a reproduction of another work but rather is often a unique image designed from the start to be expressed in a particular printmaking technique. A print may be known as an impression. Printmaking is not chosen only for its ability to produce multiple impressions, but rather for the unique qualities that each of the printmaking processes lends itself to.

Old Master skilled painter

In art history, "Old Master" refers to any painter of skill who worked in Europe before about 1800, or a painting by such an artist. An "old master print" is an original print made by an artist in the same period. The term "old master drawing" is used in the same way.

Contents

He was born to a modest family in 1746 in the village of Fuendetodos in Aragon. He studied painting from age 14 under José Luzán y Martinez and moved to Madrid to study with Anton Raphael Mengs. He married Josefa Bayeu in 1773; their life was characterised by an almost constant series of pregnancies and miscarriages, and only one child, a son, survived into adulthood. Goya became a court painter to the Spanish Crown in 1786 and this early portion of his career is marked by portraits of the Spanish aristocracy and royalty, and Rococo style tapestry cartoons designed for the royal palace.

Fuendetodos Municipality in Aragon, Spain

Fuendetodos is a town in the Campo de Belchite comarca (county), in Aragon, Spain, located about 44 kilometers south-east of Zaragoza. As of 2011, it had a population of approximately 178.

Aragon Autonomous community of Spain

Aragon is an autonomous community in Spain, coextensive with the medieval Kingdom of Aragon. Located in northeastern Spain, the Aragonese autonomous community comprises three provinces : Huesca, Zaragoza, and Teruel. Its capital is Zaragoza. The current Statute of Autonomy declares Aragon a historic nationality of Spain.

José Luzán, also José Luzán y Martínez, was a Spanish Baroque painter.

Goya was guarded, and although letters and writings survive, little is known about his thoughts. He suffered a severe and undiagnosed illness in 1793 which left him deaf. Sick and disillusioned, after 1793 his work became progressively darker and pessimistic. His later easel and mural paintings, prints and drawings appear to reflect a bleak outlook on personal, social and political levels, and contrast with his social climbing. He was appointed Director of the Royal Academy in 1795, the year Manuel Godoy made an unfavorable treaty with France. In 1799 Goya became Primer Pintor de Cámara, the then-highest rank for a Spanish court painter. In the late 1790s, commissioned by Godoy, he completed his La maja desnuda , a remarkably daring nude for the time and clearly indebted to Diego Velázquez. In 1801 he painted Charles IV of Spain and His Family , also influenced by Velázquez.

Manuel Godoy Prime Minister of Spain

Manuel Godoy y Álvarez de Faria, Prince of Peace, 1st Duke of Alcudia, 1st Duke of Sueca, 1st Baron of Mascalbó, GE, KOGF, OCIII, OSH, OS, LH, OC, OSJ, OSFM was First Secretary of State of Spain from 1792 to 1797 and from 1801 to 1808. He received many titles, including Príncipe de la Paz, by which he is widely known. He came to power at a young age as the favorite of the King and Queen. Despite multiple disasters, he maintained power. Many Spanish leaders blamed Godoy for the disastrous war with Britain that cut off Spain's Empire and ruined its finances.

Diego Velázquez 17th-century Spanish painter

Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez was a Spanish painter, the leading artist in the court of King Philip IV, and one of the most important painters of the Spanish Golden Age. He was an individualistic artist of the contemporary Baroque period. In addition to numerous renditions of scenes of historical and cultural significance, he painted scores of portraits of the Spanish royal family, other notable European figures, and commoners, culminating in the production of his masterpiece Las Meninas (1656).

<i>Charles IV of Spain and His Family</i> Goya oil on canvas painting

Charles IV of Spain and His Family is an oil on canvas painting by the Spanish artist Francisco Goya. He began work on this painting in 1800, shortly after he became First Chamber Painter to the royal family, and completed it in the summer of 1801.

In 1807 Napoleon led the French army into the Peninsular War against Spain. Goya remained in Madrid during the war which seems to have affected him deeply. Although he did not vocalise his thoughts in public, they can be inferred from his Disasters of War series of prints (although published 35 years after his death) and his 1814 paintings The Second of May 1808 and The Third of May 1808 . Other works from his mid-period include the Caprichos and Los Disparates etching series, and a wide variety of paintings concerned with insanity, mental asylums, witches, fantastical creatures and religious and political corruption, all of which suggest that he feared for both his country's fate and his own mental and physical health.

Napoleon 18th/19th-century French monarch, military and political leader

Napoléon Bonaparte was a French statesman and military leader of Italian descent who rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars. He was Emperor of the French as Napoleon I from 1804 until 1814 and again briefly in 1815 during the Hundred Days. Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions in the Napoleonic Wars. He won most of these wars and the vast majority of his battles, building a large empire that ruled over much of continental Europe before its final collapse in 1815. He is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleon's political and cultural legacy has endured as one of the most celebrated and controversial leaders in human history.

Peninsular War War by Spain, Portugal and the United Kingdom against the French Empire (1807–1814)

The Peninsular War (1807–1814) was a military conflict between Napoleon's empire and Bourbon Spain, for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when the French and Spanish armies invaded and occupied Portugal in 1807, and escalated in 1808 when France turned on Spain, previously its ally. The war on the peninsula lasted until the Sixth Coalition defeated Napoleon in 1814, and is regarded as one of the first wars of national liberation, significant for the emergence of large-scale guerrilla warfare.

<i>The Disasters of War</i> series of prints by Francisco Goya

The Disasters of War is a series of 82 prints created between 1810 and 1820 by the Spanish painter and printmaker Francisco Goya (1746–1828). Although Goya did not make known his intention when creating the plates, art historians view them as a visual protest against the violence of the 1808 Dos de Mayo Uprising, the subsequent Peninsular War of 1808–14 and the setbacks to the liberal cause following the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in 1814. During the conflicts between Napoleon's French Empire and Spain, Goya retained his position as first court painter to the Spanish crown and continued to produce portraits of the Spanish and French rulers. Although deeply affected by the war, he kept private his thoughts on the art he produced in response to the conflict and its aftermath. He was in poor health and almost deaf when, at 62, he began work on the prints. They were not published until 1863, 35 years after his death. It is likely that only then was it considered politically safe to distribute a sequence of artworks criticising both the French and restored Bourbons. In total over a thousand sets have been printed, though later ones are of lower quality, and most print room collections have at least some of the set.

His late period culminates with the Black Paintings of 1819–1823, applied on oil on the plaster walls of his house the Quinta del Sordo (House of the Deaf Man) where, disillusioned by political and social developments in Spain he lived in near isolation. Goya eventually abandoned Spain in 1824 to retire to the French city of Bordeaux, accompanied by his much younger maid and companion, Leocadia Weiss, who may or may not have been his lover. There he completed his La Tauromaquia series and a number of other, major, canvases. Following a stroke which left him paralyzed on his right side, and suffering failing eyesight and poor access to painting materials, he died and was buried on 16 April 1828 aged 82. His body was later re-interred in the Real Ermita de San Antonio de la Florida in Madrid. Famously, the skull was missing, a detail the Spanish consul immediately communicated to his superiors in Madrid, who wired back, "Send Goya, with or without head." [2]

<i>Black Paintings</i> paintings by Francisco de Goya

The Black Paintings is the name given to a group of fourteen paintings by Francisco Goya from the later years of his life, likely between 1819 and 1823. They portray intense, haunting themes, reflective of both his fear of insanity and his bleak outlook on humanity. In 1819, at the age of 72, Goya moved into a two-storey house outside Madrid that was called Quinta del Sordo. Although the house had been named after the previous owner, who was deaf, Goya too was nearly deaf at the time as a result of a fever he had suffered when he was 46. The paintings originally were painted as murals on the walls of the house, later being "hacked off” the walls and attached to canvas." They are now in the Museo del Prado in Madrid.

Quinta del Sordo

The Quinta del Sordo, or Quinta de Goya, was the name of an extensive estate and country house situated on a hill in the old municipality of Carabanchel on the outskirts of Madrid. The house is best known as the home of Francisco de Goya in the years leading up to his exile, and where he painted the Black Paintings comprising fourteen murals. Contrary to popular belief, the estate was given its name due to the deafness of a prior owner, having nothing to do with Goya himself, who was deafened by illness in 1792. The house was demolished in 1909.

Bordeaux Prefecture and commune in Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne in the Gironde department in Southwestern France.

Early years (1746–1771)

Birth house of Francisco Goya, Fuendetodos, Zaragoza Casa natal de Francisco Goya, Fuendetodos, Zaragoza, Espana, 2015-01-08, DD 06.JPG
Birth house of Francisco Goya, Fuendetodos, Zaragoza

Francisco Goya was born in Fuendetodos, Aragón, Spain, on 30 March 1746 to José Benito de Goya y Franque and Gracia de Lucientes y Salvador. The family had moved that year from the city of Zaragoza, but there is no record why; likely José was commissioned to work there. [3] They were lower middle-class. José was the son of a notary and of Basque origin, his ancestors being from Zerain, [4] earning his living as a gilder, specialising in religious and decorative craftwork. [5] He oversaw the gilding and most of the ornamentation during the rebuilding of the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar (Santa Maria del Pilar), the principal cathedral of Zaragoza. Francisco was their fourth child, following his sister Rita (b. 1737), brother Tomás (b. 1739) (who was to follow in his father's trade) and second sister Jacinta (b. 1743). There were two younger sons, Mariano (b. 1750) and Camilo (b. 1753). [6]

Zaragoza Place in Aragon, Spain

Zaragoza is the capital city of the Zaragoza province and of the autonomous community of Aragon, Spain. It lies by the Ebro river and its tributaries, the Huerva and the Gállego, roughly in the center of both Aragon and the Ebro basin.

Notary person licensed by the state to perform acts in legal affairs, in particular witnessing signatures on documents

A notary is a person licensed by the government to perform acts in legal affairs, in particular witnessing signatures on documents. The form that the notarial profession takes varies with local legal systems.

Zerain is a town and municipality located in the Goierri region of the province of Gipuzkoa, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country, northern Spain.

His mother's family had pretensions of nobility and the house, a modest brick cottage, was owned by her family and, perhaps fancifully, bore their crest. [5] About 1749 José and Gracia bought a home in Zaragoza and were able to return to live in the city. Although there are no surviving records it is thought that Goya may have attended the Escuelas Pías de San Antón, which offered free schooling. His education seems to have been adequate but not enlightening; he had reading, writing and numeracy, and some knowledge of the classics. According to Robert Hughes the artist "seems to have taken no more interest than a carpenter in philosophical or theological matters, and his views on painting ... were very down to earth: Goya was no theoretician." [7] At school he formed a close and lifelong friendship with fellow pupil Martin Zapater; the 131 letters Goya wrote to him from 1775 until Zapater's death in 1801 give valuable insight into Goya's early years at the court in Madrid. [3] [8]

Visit to Italy

At age 14 Goya studied under the painter José Luzán, where he copied stamps for 4 years until he decided to work on his own, as he wrote later on "paint from my invention". [9] He moved to Madrid to study with Anton Raphael Mengs, a popular painter with Spanish royalty. He clashed with his master, and his examinations were unsatisfactory. Goya submitted entries for the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in 1763 and 1766, but was denied entrance. [10]

Sacrifice to Pan, 1771. Coleccion Jose Gudiol, Barcelona Sacrificio a Pan.jpg
Sacrifice to Pan, 1771. Colección José Gudiol, Barcelona

Rome was then the cultural capital of Europe and held all the prototypes of classical antiquity, while Spain lacked a coherent artistic direction, with all of its significant visual achievements in the past. Having failed to earn a scholarship, Goya relocated at his own expense to Rome in the old tradition of European artists stretching back at least to Albrecht Dürer. [11] He was an unknown at the time and so the records are scant and uncertain. Early biographers have him travelling to Rome with a gang of bullfighters, where he worked as a street acrobat, or for a Russian diplomat, or fell in love with beautiful young nun whom he plotted to abduct from her convent. [12] What is more certain is two surviving mythological paintings completed during the visit, a Sacrifice to Vesta and a Sacrifice to Pan, both dated 1771. [13]

Portrait of Josefa Bayeu (1747-1812) Josefa Bayeu Francisco De Goya y Lucientes.jpg
Portrait of Josefa Bayeu (1747–1812)

In 1771 he won second prize in a painting competition organized by the City of Parma. That year he returned to Zaragoza and painted elements of the cupolas of the Basilica of the Pillar (including Adoration of the Name of God ), a cycle of frescoes for the monastic church of the Charterhouse of Aula Dei, and the frescoes of the Sobradiel Palace. He studied with the Aragónese artist Francisco Bayeu y Subías and his painting began to show signs of the delicate tonalities for which he became famous. He befriended Francisco Bayeu, and married his sister Josefa (he nicknamed her "Pepa") [14] on 25 July 1773. Their first child, Antonio Juan Ramon Carlos, was born on 29 August 1774. [15]

Madrid (1775–1789)

The Parasol, 1777 El Quitasol (Goya).jpg
The Parasol, 1777

The marriage and Francisco Bayeu's 1765 membership of the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando and directorship of the tapestry works from 1777 helped Goya earn a commission for a series of tapestry cartoons for the Royal Tapestry Factory. Over five years he designed some 42 patterns, many of which were used to decorate and insulate the stone walls of El Escorial and the Palacio Real del Pardo, the residences of the Spanish monarchs. While designing tapestries was neither prestigious nor well paid, his cartoons are mostly popularist in a rococo style, and Goya used them to bring himself to wider attention. [16]

The cartoons were not his only royal commissions, and were accompanied by a series of engravings, mostly copies after old masters such as Marcantonio Raimondi and Velázquez. Goya had a complicated relationship to the latter artist; while many of his contemporaries saw folly in Goya's attempts to copy and emulate him, he had access to a wide range of the long-dead painter's works that had been contained in the royal collection. [17] Nonetheless, etching was a medium that the young artist was to master, a medium that was to reveal both the true depths of his imagination and his political beliefs. [18] His c. 1779 etching of The Garrotted Man ("El agarrotado") was the largest work he had produced to date, and an obvious foreboding of his later "Disasters of War" series. [19]

The Garroted Man, before 1780. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Goya - The Garroted Man.jpg
The Garroted Man, before 1780. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Goya was beset by illness, and his condition was used against him by his rivals, who looked jealously upon any artist seen to be rising in stature. Some of the larger cartoons, such as The Wedding, were more than 8 by 10 feet, and had proved a drain on his physical strength. Ever resourceful, Goya turned this misfortune around, claiming that his illness had allowed him the insight to produce works that were more personal and informal. [20] However, he found the format limiting, as it did not allow him to capture complex color shifts or texture, and was unsuited to the impasto and glazing techniques he was by then applying to his painted works. The tapestries seem as comments on human types, fashion and fads. [21]

Other works from the period include a canvas for the altar of the Church of San Francisco El Grande in Madrid, which led to his appointment as a member of the Royal Academy of Fine Art.

Court painter

Charles IV of Spain and His Family, 1800 La familia de Carlos IV, por Francisco de Goya.jpg
Charles IV of Spain and His Family , 1800

In 1783, the Count of Floridablanca, favorite of King Charles III, commissioned Goya to paint his portrait. He became friends with the King's half-brother Luis, and spent two summers working on portraits of both the Infante and his family. [23] During the 1780s, his circle of patrons grew to include the Duke and Duchess of Osuna, the King and other notable people of the kingdom whom he painted. In 1786, Goya was given a salaried position as painter to Charles III.

The Family of the Infante Don Luis, 1784. Magnani-Rocca, Parma La familia del infante don Luis.jpg
The Family of the Infante Don Luis , 1784. Magnani-Rocca, Parma

Goya was appointed court painter to Charles IV in 1789. The following year he became First Court Painter, with a salary of 50,000 reales and an allowance of 500 ducats for a coach. He painted portraits of the king and the queen, and the Spanish Prime Minister Manuel de Godoy and many other nobles. These portraits are notable for their disinclination to flatter; his Charles IV of Spain and His Family is an especially brutal assessment of a royal family. [upper-alpha 2] Modern interpreters view the portrait as satirical; it is thought to reveal the corruption behind the rule of Charles IV. Under his reign his wife Louisa was thought to have had the real power, and thus Goya placed her at the center of the group portrait. From the back left of the painting one can see the artist himself looking out at the viewer, and the painting behind the family depicts Lot and his daughters, thus once again echoing the underlying message of corruption and decay.

Portrait of Manuel Godoy, 1801. Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando Francisco de Goya - Godoy como general - Google Art Project.jpg
Portrait of Manuel Godoy , 1801. Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando

Goya earned commissions from the highest ranks of the Spanish nobility, including Pedro Téllez-Girón, 9th Duke of Osuna and his wife María Josefa Pimentel, 12th Countess-Duchess of Benavente, María del Pilar de Silva, 13th Duchess of Alba (universally known simply as the "Duchess of Alba"), and her husband José María Álvarez de Toledo, 15th Duke of Medina Sidonia, and María Ana de Pontejos y Sandoval, Marchioness of Pontejos. In 1801 he painted Godoy in a commission to commemorate the victory in the brief War of the Oranges against Portugal. The two were friends, even if Goya's 1801 portrait is usually seen as satire. Yet even after Godoy's fall from grace the politician referred to the artist in warm terms. Godoy saw himself as instrumental in the publication of the Caprichos and is widely believed to have commissioned La maja desnuda . [24]

Middle period (1793–1799)

Goya Maja naga2.jpg
La maja desnuda , 1790–1800
Maja vestida (Prado).jpg
La maja vestida , 1800–1805

La Maja Desnuda (La maja desnuda) was "the first totally profane life-size female nude in Western art" without pretense to allegorical or mythological meaning. [25] The identity of the Majas is uncertain. The most popularly cited models are the Duchess of Alba, with whom Goya was sometimes thought to have had an affair, and Pepita Tudó, mistress of Manuel de Godoy. Neither theory has been verified, and it remains as likely that the paintings represent an idealized composite. [26] The paintings were never publicly exhibited during Goya's lifetime and were owned by Godoy. [27] In 1808 all Godoy's property was seized by Ferdinand VII after his fall from power and exile, and in 1813 the Inquisition confiscated both works as 'obscene', returning them in 1836 to the Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando. [28] In 1798 he painted luminous and airy scenes for the pendentives and cupola of the Real Ermita (Chapel) of San Antonio de la Florida in Madrid. Many of these depict miracles of Saint Anthony of Padua set in the midst of contemporary Madrid.

The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters, c. 1797, 21.5 cm x 15 cm (8 /2 in x 5 /8 in) Museo del Prado - Goya - Caprichos - No. 43 - El sueno de la razon produce monstruos.jpg
The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters , c.1797, 21.5 cm × 15 cm (8 2 in × 5 8 in)

At some time between late 1792 and early 1793 an undiagnosed illness left Goya deaf. He became withdrawn and introspective while the direction and tone of his work changed. He began the series of aquatinted etchings, published in 1799 as the Caprichos —completed in parallel with the more official commissions of portraits and religious paintings. In 1799 Goya published 80 Caprichos prints depicting what he described as "the innumerable foibles and follies to be found in any civilized society, and from the common prejudices and deceitful practices which custom, ignorance, or self-interest have made usual". [29] The visions in these prints are partly explained by the caption "The sleep of reason produces monsters". Yet these are not solely bleak; they demonstrate the artist's sharp satirical wit, particularly evident in etchings such as Hunting for Teeth.

Goya's physical and mental breakdown seems to have happened a few weeks after the French declaration of war on Spain. A contemporary reported, "The noises in his head and deafness aren’t improving, yet his vision is much better and he is back in control of his balance." [30] These symptoms may indicate a prolonged viral encephalitis, or possibly a series of miniature strokes resulting from high blood pressure and which affected the hearing and balance centers of the brain. Symptoms of tinnitus, episodes of imbalance and progressive deafness are typical of Ménière's disease. [31] It is possible that Goya suffered from cumulative lead poisoning, as he used massive amounts of lead white—which he ground himself [1] —in his paintings, both as a canvas primer and as a primary color. [32] [33]

Other postmortem diagnostic assessments point toward paranoid dementia, possibly due to brain trauma, as evidenced by marked changes in his work after his recovery, culminating in the "black" paintings. [34] Art historians have noted Goya's singular ability to express his personal demons as horrific and fantastic imagery that speaks universally, and allows his audience to find its own catharsis in the images. [35]

Peninsular War (1808–1814)

The Third of May 1808, 1814. Oil on canvas, 266 cm x 345 cm (105 in x 136 in). Museo del Prado, Madrid El Tres de Mayo, by Francisco de Goya, from Prado thin black margin.jpg
The Third of May 1808 , 1814. Oil on canvas, 266 cm × 345 cm (105 in × 136 in). Museo del Prado, Madrid

The French army invaded Spain in 1808, leading to the Peninsular War of 1808–1814. The extent of Goya's involvement with the court of the "Intruder king", Joseph I, the brother of Napoleon Bonaparte, is not known; he painted works for French patrons and sympathisers, but kept neutral during the fighting. After the restoration of the Spanish king Ferdinand VII in 1814, Goya denied any involvement with the French. By the time of his wife Josefa's death in 1812, he was painting The Second of May 1808 and The Third of May 1808 , and preparing the series of etchings later known as The Disasters of War (Los desastres de la guerra). Ferdinand VII returned to Spain in 1814 but relations with Goya were not cordial. The artist completed portraits of the king for a variety of ministries, but not for the king himself.

The Second of May 1808, 1814 El dos de mayo de 1808 en Madrid.jpg
The Second of May 1808 , 1814

While convalescing between 1793–1794, Goya completed a set of eleven small pictures painted on tin that mark a significant change in the tone and subject matter of his art, and draw from the dark and dramatic realms of fantasy nightmare. Yard with Lunatics is an imaginary vision of loneliness, fear and social alienation. The condemnation of brutality towards prisoners (whether criminal or insane) is a subject that Goya assayed in later works [36] that focused on the degradation of the human figure. [37] It was one of the first of Goya's mid-1790s cabinet paintings, in which his earlier search for ideal beauty gave way to an examination of the relationship between naturalism and fantasy that would preoccupy him for the rest of his career. [38] He was undergoing a nervous breakdown and entering prolonged physical illness, [39] and admitted that the series was created to reflect his own self-doubt, anxiety and fear that he was losing his mind. [40] Goya wrote that the works served "to occupy my imagination, tormented as it is by contemplation of my sufferings." The series, he said, consisted of pictures which "normally find no place in commissioned works."

Although Goya did not make his intention known when creating The Disasters of War, art historians view them as a visual protest against the violence of the 1808 Dos de Mayo Uprising, the subsequent Peninsular War and the move against liberalism in the aftermath of the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in 1814. The scenes are singularly disturbing, sometimes macabre in their depiction of battlefield horror, and represent an outraged conscience in the face of death and destruction. [41] They were not published until 1863, 35 years after his death. It is likely that only then was it considered politically safe to distribute a sequence of artworks criticising both the French and restored Bourbons. [42]

The first 47 plates in the series focus on incidents from the war and show the consequences of the conflict on individual soldiers and civilians. The middle series (plates 48 to 64) record the effects of the famine that hit Madrid in 1811–12, before the city was liberated from the French. The final 17 reflect the bitter disappointment of liberals when the restored Bourbon monarchy, encouraged by the Catholic hierarchy, rejected the Spanish Constitution of 1812 and opposed both state and religious reform. Since their first publication, Goya's scenes of atrocities, starvation, degradation and humiliation have been described as the "prodigious flowering of rage". [43]

His works from 1814 to 1819 are mostly commissioned portraits, but also include the altarpiece of Santa Justa and Santa Rufina for the Cathedral of Seville, the print series of La Tauromaquia depicting scenes from bullfighting, and probably the etchings of Los Disparates .

Quinta del Sordo and Black Paintings (1819–1822)

Witches' Sabbath or Aquelarre is one of 14 from the Black Paintings series. Francisco de Goya y Lucientes - Witches' Sabbath (The Great He-Goat).jpg
Witches' Sabbath or Aquelarre is one of 14 from the Black Paintings series.

Records of Goya's later life are relatively scant, and ever politically aware, he suppressed a number of his works from this period, working instead in private. [45] Tormented by a dread of old age and fear of madness, the latter possibly from anxiety caused by an undiagnosed illness that left him deaf from the early 1790s. [46] Goya had been a successful and royally placed artist, but withdrew from public life during his final years. From the late 1810s he lived in near-solitude outside Madrid in a farmhouse converted into a studio. The house had become known as "La Quinta del Sordo" (The House of the Deaf Man), after the nearest farmhouse that had coincidentally also belonged to a deaf man. [47]

Art historians assume Goya felt alienated from the social and political trends that followed the 1814 restoration of the Bourbon monarchy, and that he viewed these developments as reactionary means of social control. In his unpublished art he seems to have railed against what he saw as a tactical retreat into Medievalism. [48] It is thought that he had hoped for political and religious reform, but like many liberals became disillusioned when the restored Bourbon monarchy and Catholic hierarchy rejected the Spanish Constitution of 1812. [49]

At the age of 75, alone and in mental and physical despair, he completed the work of his 14 Black Paintings , [upper-alpha 3] all of which were executed in oil directly onto the plaster walls of his house. Goya did not intend for the paintings to be exhibited, did not write of them, [upper-alpha 4] and likely never spoke of them. [50] Around 1874, 50 years after his death, they were taken down and transferred to a canvas support. Many of the works were significantly altered during the restoration, and in the words of Arthur Lubow what remain are "at best a crude facsimile of what Goya painted." [51] The effects of time on the murals, coupled with the inevitable damage caused by the delicate operation of mounting the crumbling plaster on canvas, meant that most of the murals suffered extensive damage and loss of paint. Today they are on permanent display at the Museo del Prado, Madrid.

Bordeaux (October 1824–1828)

The Milkmaid of Bordeaux, 1825-27, is the third and final Goya portrait which may depict Leocadia Weiss. Goya MilkMaid.jpg
The Milkmaid of Bordeaux , 1825–27, is the third and final Goya portrait which may depict Leocadia Weiss.

Leocadia Weiss (née Zorrilla, 1790–1856) [53] [54] the artist's maid, younger by 35 years, and a distant relative, [55] lived with and cared for Goya after Bayeu's death. She stayed with him in his Quinta del Sordo villa until 1824 with her daughter Rosario. [56] Leocadia was probably similar in features to Goya's first wife Josefa Bayeu, to the point that one of his well-known portraits bears the cautious title of Josefa Bayeu (or Leocadia Weiss). [57]

Not much is known about her beyond her fiery temperament. She was likely related to the Goicoechea family, a wealthy dynasty into which the artist's son, the feckless Javier, had married. It is believed she held liberal political views and was unafraid of expressing them, a fact met with disapproval by Goya's family. It is known that Leocadia had an unhappy marriage with a jeweler, Isideo Weiss, but was separated from him since 1811. Her husband cited "illicit conduct" during the divorce proceedings. She had two children before the marriage dissolved, and bore a third, Rosario, in 1814 when she was 26. Isideo was not the father, and it has often been speculated—although with little firm evidence—that the child belonged to Goya. [58] There has been much speculation that Goya and Weiss were romantically linked; however, it is more likely the affection between them was sentimental. [59]

Goya died on 16 April 1828. [60] Leocadia was left nothing in Goya's will; mistresses were often omitted in such circumstances, but it is also likely that he did not want to dwell on his mortality by thinking about or revising his will. She wrote to a number of Goya's friends to complain of her exclusion but many of her friends were Goya's also and by then were old men or had died, and did not reply. Largely destitute, she moved into rented accommodation, later passing on her copy of the Caprichos for free. [61]

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Related Research Articles

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References

Footnotes

  1. Théophile Gautier described the figures as looking like "the corner baker and his wife after they won the lottery". [22]
  2. "Even if one takes into consideration the fact that Spanish portraiture is often realistic to the point of eccentricity, Goya's portrait still remains unique in its drastic description of human bankruptcy". Licht (1979), 68
  3. A contemporary inventory compiled by Goya's friend, the painter Antonio de Brugada, records 15. See Lubow, 2003
  4. As he had with for the "Caprichos" and "The Disasters of War" series. Licht (1979), 159

References

  1. 1 2 Historical Clinicopathological Conference (2017) University of Maryland School of Medicine, retrieved January 27, 2017.
  2. Carlos, Fuentes (1992). "The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World. London". Andre Deutsch Ltd ISBN   978-02339-79953 p.230.templatestyles stripmarker in |publisher= at position 19 (help)
  3. 1 2 Hughes (2004), 32
  4. "ZERAINGO OSPETSUAK : Francisco de Goya". Zerain.com. Retrieved 21 October 2017.
  5. 1 2 Connell (2004), 6–7
  6. Hughes (2004), 27
  7. Hughes (2004), 33
  8. "Cartas de Goya a Martín Zapater. Museo del Prado. Retrieved 13 December 2015
  9. Connell (2004), 14
  10. Hagen & Hagen, 317
  11. Hughes (2004), 34
  12. Hughes (2004), 37
  13. Eitner (1997), 58
  14. Baticle (1994), 74
  15. Symmons (2004), 66
  16. Hagen & Hagen, 7
  17. Hughes (2004), 95
  18. Hagen; Hagen (1999), 7
  19. Hughes (2004), 96
  20. Hughes (2004), 130
  21. Hughes (2004), 83
  22. Chocano, Carina. "Goya's Ghosts". Los Angeles Times, 20 July 2007. Retrieved on 18 January 2008.
  23. Tomlinson (2003), 147
  24. Tomlinson (1991), 59
  25. Licht (1979), 83
  26. "The Nude Maja, the Prado". Retrieved 17 July 2010.
  27. The unflinching eye.. The Guardian, October 2003.
  28. Museo del Prado, Catálogo de las pinturas. Ministerio de Educación y Cultura, Madrid, 1996. 138. ISBN   84-87317-53-7
  29. The Sleep of Reason Linda Simon (www.worldandi.com). Retrieved 2 December 2006.
  30. Siri Hustvedt (10 August 2006). Mysteries of the Rectangle: Essays on Painting. Princeton Architectural Press. p. 63. ISBN   978-1-56898-618-0.
  31. Mary Mathews Gedo (1985). Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Art: PPA. Analytic Press. p. 82. ISBN   978-0-88163-030-5.
  32. James G. Hollandsworth (31 January 1990). The Physiology of Psychological Disorders: Schizophrenia, Depression, Anxiety and Substance Abuse. Springer. pp. 3–4. ISBN   978-0-306-43353-5.
  33. Connell (2004), 78–79
  34. Petra ten-Doesschate Chu; Laurinda S. Dixon (2008). Twenty-first-century Perspectives on Nineteenth-century Art: Essays in Honor of Gabriel P. Weisberg. Associated University Presse. p. 127. ISBN   978-0-87413-011-9.
  35. Paul Williams (3 February 2011). The Psychoanalytic Therapy of Severe Disturbance. Karnac Books. p. 238. ISBN   978-1-78049-298-8.
  36. Thomas Crow (2007). "3: Tensions of the Enlightenment, Goya". In Stephen Eisenman (ed.). Nineteenth Century Art.: A Critical History (PDF) (3 ed.). New York: Thames and Hudson. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  37. Licht (1979), 156
  38. Schulz, Andrew. "The Expressive Body in Goya's Saint Francis Borgia at the Deathbed of an Impenitent". The Art Bulletin, 80.4 1998.
  39. It is not known why Goya became sick, the many theories range from polio or syphilis, to lead poisoning. Yet he survived until eighty-two years.
  40. Hughes, Robert. "The unflinching eye". The Guardian , 4 October 2003. Retrieved 30 January 2010.
  41. Wilson-Bareau, 45
  42. Jones, Jonathan. "Look what we did". The Guardian, 31 March 2003. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
  43. Connell (2004), 175
  44. Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. "The Napoleonic wars: the Peninsular War 1807–1814". Oxford: Osprey Publishing, 2002. 73. ISBN   1-84176-370-5
  45. Connell, 175
  46. The cause of Goya's illness is unknown; theories range from polio to syphilis to lead poisoning. See Connell, 78–79
  47. Connell, 204; Hughes, 372
  48. Larson, Kay. "Dark Knight". New York Magazine, Volume 22, No. 20, 15 May 1989. 111.
  49. Stoichita; Coderch, 25–30
  50. Licht (1979), 159
  51. Lubow, Arthur. "The Secret of the Black Paintings". The New York Times , 27 July 2003. Retrieved 3 October 2010.
  52. Hughes (2004), 402
  53. Junquera, 13
  54. Stevenson, Ian (2003). European Cases of the Reincarnation Type (2015 ed.). McFarland & Co. pp. 243–244. ISBN   9781476601151.
  55. Gassier, 103
  56. Buchholz, 79
  57. Connell (2004), 28
  58. Hughes (2004), 372
  59. Junquera, 68
  60. Chilvers, Ian. "Goya, Francisco de". The Oxford Dictionary of Art (2014 online ed.). Oxford University Press. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  61. Connell (2004), 235

Further reading