Neoclassicism and Romanticism



 


(Neoclassicism, Romanticism and Art Styles in 19th century - Art Map)



 

       
   


 

 
   


Francisco de Goya


"Life and Work"

 

 
   

CONTENTS

 
   

Early Years (1746-1773)

 
   

Move to Madrid (1774-1783)

 
   

Artist to Nobility (1783-1791)

 
   

Crisis and a New Start (1792-1798)

 
   

The Sleep of Reason (1797-1799)

 
   

"CAPRICHOS"

 
   

The Height of Fame (1799-1807)

 
   

Times of War (1808-1818)

 
   

"DISASTERS OF WAR"

 
   

The "Black Paintings" (1819-1823)

 
   

"DISPARATES"

 
   

Exile in France (1824-1828)

 
   

"TAUROMAQUIA"

 
   

 

 
 
 

 

 

 


The "Black Paintings"


1819-1823


 


TIMELINE
 

 

1819 Spain sells its colony in Florida to the USA. The Prado opens as a museum of art. Beethoven composes his Missa Solemnis.
1819 Goya paints altarpieces. First attempts at the new technique of lithography. Severely ill towards the end of the year.
1820 The 73-year-old Goya survives the illness and paints Self-Portrait with Doctor Arrieta. During the course of this year, he paints large-format frescoes, the so-called "Black Paintings," in his house.
1821 Puts finishing touches to Disasters of War series of prints, in addition to work on the so-called Disparates.
1821 Birth of the writers Charles Baudelaire, Feodor Dostoyevsky, and Gustave Flaubert.
1822 The Vatican accepts the Copernican (heliocentric) view of the universe.
1823 Goya gives his country house to his 17-year-old grandson Mariano. Leocadia Weiss, a liberal, goes into hiding because of increasing political persecution in Spain.
1824 End of Spanish colonial rule in South America.



 



Francisco de Goya
Saturn Devouring One of his Children

1819-23
Plaster mounted on canvas, 146 x 83 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid
 

In 1819 Goya bought a small country house outside Madrid, where he could live with his young companion, Leocadia Weiss, far from the bustle and gossip of the city. In the same year he became so ill that he nearly died. After his recovery, he retired almost completely from public life and worked mainly for himself, thus freeing himself from having to take account of public expectations. In addition to the frescoes he painted in his house, known as "the House of the Deaf Man," he created a series of strange, absurd etchings. It was not until the Surrealists of the 20th century that artists were to draw so heavily on their own fantasies and dreams. Goya's images, however, are also a reflection of dramatic, radical political change. After the apparent victory of the supporters of reform in the uprising of 1820, the purges of the Inquisition and the secret police recommenced.
 

 



"The House of the Deaf Man"


 


Francisco de Goya
Self-Portrait with Doctor Arrieta
1820
Oil on canvas 117x79cm
Minneapolis, The Institute of Arts

In the long dedication at the lower edge of the painting Goya records his thanks to the doctor who cared for him during his dangerous illness.
The self-portrait shows the mortally ill painter helpless in the arms of the solicitous doctor, who is in the act of giving him medicine.
It is only on second glance that we notice the outlines of faces in the background; they seem harbingers of the somber visions
Goya painted on the walls of his house after his recovery. The color is so thin in places that the canvas is visible.
 



Francisco de Goya
Man in disguise (Goya?)
1823

The country house which Goya bought in 1819 for 60,000 reales lay outside Madrid, on the banks of the Manzanares, and was soon called Quinta del Sordo, "the House of the Deaf Man." Goya had reason enough, private and political, to flee city life. Under the disapproving eyes of his relatives, the young Leocadia Weiss had become his companion after the death of his wife. She was separated from her husband and made no secret of her liberal politics. She and her small daughter Rosario moved into the Quinta del Sordo with Goya.
In the two largest rooms of the house, Goya painted his last major series of pictures: 14 frescoes called the "Black Paintings" because of their predominantly dark colors and somber themes. They were painted in oils directly onto the walls. In the late 19th century they were detached from the walls and transferred to canvas. The Black Paintings belong to Goya's most enigmatic and oppressive works. One of the paintings shows an outlandish procession of pilgrims in a dark mountain landscape; and another, two men in a desolate landscape fighting with cudgels while sinking into quicksand. Then again, we make out figures hovering indistinctly in the air as in the painting Vision (Asmodea). In these paintings dark forces, fanaticism, violence and fear hold sway. These oppressive visions give a vivid impression of Goya's fears and reveal him to be a lonely, deaf old man who had withdrawn into a deeply depressive and critical view of life. The Spanish author Ortega y Gasset (1883-1955) wrote of Goya's work: "Is what we see good or bad? Does it mean what we think it does, or exactly the opposite? Is its effect an expression of the artist's wish, or does what he paints come into existence independently of his will? In a word, is he a highly significant genius or a madman?" In many of the Black Paintings Goya adopted mythological or biblical scenes which, as with his subjective visions, he represented as oppressive nightmares, as with Saturn Devouring His Children. Another painting shows the biblical figure of Judith slaying Holofernes.
One single painting radiates peace and possible reconciliation: the painting of Leocadia Weiss.
 


Francisco de Goya
Witches Sabbath (The Great He-Goat)

1820-23
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 140 x 438 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid

Well overfour meters (about 14.4 feet) wide, this painting was also given the title Witches' Sabbath.
It was painted in Goya's large living room, immediately next to the portrait of Leocadia. Perhaps she is also depicted in this
painting: to the far right a young woman is sitting a little to one side of the gathering of witch-like creatures.
She is looking distantly at the crowd swarming around the great goat.
Since at least the Middle Ages the goat has been a symbol of the Devil and of lust;
here its figure is seen as a black silhouette, its head emerging from the wide drapes that cover its body.
Goya, who did not paint this ghostly vision for public eyes, worked with broad brushstrokes. in tones of black,
gray, and brown, with here and there a gleam of white shining from the eyes of the figures.
Every object seems to merge together and blend with the somber background into indistinct clusters.

 


Francisco de Goya
A Pilgrimage to San Isidro

1820-23
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 140 x 438 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid


 


Francisco de Goya
A Pilgrimage to San Isidro
(detail)
1820-23
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas
Museo del Prado, Madrid


 


Francisco de Goya
Manola (La Leocadia)

1820-23
Oil on canvas, 147 x 132 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid

Goya's companion looks thoughtfully from the painting.
The theme of death is perhaps still occupying the painter here, as Leocadia
is leaning on a rock that could also be a burial mound; above her is an open blue sky.
 

 

 


Goya's House (The House of the Deaf Man)
19th-century print
   



"Black Paintings"



in the Quinta del Sordo

(House of the Deaf Man)


(1820-1823)
 


Francisco de Goya
Duel with Cudgels

1820-23
Oil on canvas, 123 x 266 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid



 


Francisco de Goya
Reading

1820-21
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 126 x 66 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid



 


Francisco de Goya
Two Women and a Man

1820-21
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 125 x 66 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid



 


Francisco de Goya
Two Women Eating

1821-23
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 53 x 85 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid



 


Francisco de Goya
Two Monks

1821-23
Oil on plaster mounted on canvas, 144 x 66 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid



 


Francisco de Goya
The Dog

1820-23
Oil on canvas, 134 x 80 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid
 

 

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