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"

 
   

 

 

 

 

 


Artist to Nobility



1783-1791


 

 


Goya and Children
 

 


I have a four-year-old son who is so beautiful that people in the streets of Madrid turn round to look at him. He was so ill that I stopped living for that whole period. Thank God he's better now.

Goya to Martin Zapater
 


Francisco de Goya
Don Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zuniga

1788
Oil on canvas, 127 x 101 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

 

 

Children's lives, children's games

Between 1775 and 1784, Goya's wife Josefa gave birth to six children, but only the last-born son, Javier, survived. Goya always had a special relationship with children, he painted his grandson Mariano several times and even at an advanced age he drew pictures for the daughter of Leocadia Weiss, his companion. His first portraits of children were executed for aristocratic patrons who wanted to have portraits of their heirs as well as of themselves. Goya's first child portrait, painted in 1783, was of Maria Teresa, the two-year-old daughter of his patron Don Luis de Borbon. Many years later he painted her a second time, as the young Countess of Chinchon.
The portrait of the four-year-old Manuel Osorio is one of Goya's most famous works.The luminous red of his costume makes the pale, serious-looking boy, who was at that time the same age as Goya's own son, look all the more delicate. The background is indistinct. The light falls diagonally, emphasizing the boy's head. Goya added his signature to the card held in the magpie's beak. Three cats are staring through the darkness at the magpie, which the boy is holding on a thin lead. Is this a reference to the passing of childhood innocence, and the captive bird a symbol of the child's restricted freedom? Perhaps; but we have to remember that in those days it was perfectly normal to give children animals as playthings.
Goya was able to capture the child's personality with great sensitivity, transcending the purely representational portrayal. His portraits always show a great deal of tenderness for children, who were expected to display fitting dignity and composure from a very early age. The contrast between the child as a child, and the child as an actor in the elaborate and imposing ceremonies that were an inescapable aspect of court life had already been demonstrated by Velazquez in his portraits of the royal children. Goya had studied these works in detail.
Goya also depicted the children of the lower social orders in small genre paintings and tapestry designs. Not as pampered as the children of the aristocracy, they romp about in ragged clothing, under the open sky; they scuffle and tussle, they play leapfrog, and steal eggs from birds' nests. Often their games imitate the life of the grown-ups: they play soldiers and bullfighters. In the 17th century the Spanish painter Bartolome Esteban Murillo  (1618-1682) had used street children, eating or playing, as subjects for his paintings. Goya's paintings, however, are more in the tradition of the Dutch genre paintings, which were known in Spain.
 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 


 

 

The terrors of childhood

But Goya also expressed the darker aspects of childhood. Even in his official portraits of children there is often something like sadness in their expression, or a look of surprised incomprehension of the adult world. Every adult can remember the fears of childhood, the fear of punishment or of inexplicable things, of the bogeyman or darkness. Goya tries to depict these fears in several of the pages of his series of Caprichos. At the same time, he implies
criticism of brutal and absurd methods of child-rearing, and exposes adults who exploit their power over children. On one page, entitled But he broke the vase, an angry old woman is thrashing her child as though possessed. Goya's laconic comment is: "The son is naughty, the mother bad-tempered. Which is worse?" Another page shows the terror of a child confronted with a weird figure draped in a white cloth, a figure used by adults to frighten children. In Goya's time there was a good deal of discussion in Spain about the childrearing reforms of the Enlightenment. He himself designed the title page for the Spanish edition of a book by the Swiss reformist teacher Johann Pestalozzi (1746-1827),and he painted a shield for the Royal Pestalozzi School founded in Madrid in 1806.

 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 

 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 





 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 

 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 

 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785

 


Francisco de Goya
Children's Games
1777-1785


 

Francisco de Goya
Los pobres en la fuente



 

Francisco de Goya
Clara de Soria



 

Francisco de Goya
El columpio



 

Francisco de Goya
Vicente Osorio de Moscoso

 

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