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Midway through “Treasures From the House of Alba: 500 Years of Art and Collecting,” you encounter Francisco de Goya’s mysterious full-length, life-size masterpiece “The Duchess of Alba in White” (1795). The official portrait of the duchess, she’s also the unofficial centerpiece of this stunning exhibition of more than 140 artworks. It’s like your hostess coming late to the party. You don’t mind because you’re already giddy—drunk on art—and she’s absolutely ravishing.

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Wednesday, 07 October 2015 11:01

Goya Portraits Go on View at the National Gallery

Spanish painter Francisco de Goya's stark portrayals of Spanish aristocrats, intellectuals and fellow artists in a major new exhibition at the National Gallery in London aims to show him as "the best ever portrait artist."

The exhibition, which opens on Wednesday, brings together from around the world around 70 portraits by the celebrated artist who lived between 1746 and 1828.

The works make up almost half of the 150 Goya portraits that still survive today, and account for a third of his total known output.

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A painting and a drawing by Francisco de Goya, with an estimated combined value of €5 million ($5.6 million), have been stolen from a private home in Villanueva de la Cañada, a wealthy suburb of Madrid.

El País reports that the theft took place in the evening of September 1, when there was no one in the house, and the thieves disabled the alarm system.

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It's hard to believe that this gorgeous bit of painting by Francisco de Goya, held at the Carnegie Museum of Art since 1965, has only been on view now and then. But that's because it hasn't always been acknowledged as the Spaniard's work. This is about to change, as new research just about proves that the Pittsburgh painting is by him.

The prestigious "Burlington Magazine" is getting ready to publish an article, by the late art historian John Williams, that shows that Goya used the Carnegie piece to help him paint his great fresco around the base of the dome at the chapel of San Antonio de la Florida in Madrid, where he finished working in 1798.

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An old woman, back bent and teeth buckled, kneels on the floor; beside her lie two vessels and a shallow bowl and spoon. Her gaze is misted and sad, but her eyes meet the viewer’s; in her arms, about to be devoured, is a newborn baby. In a picture nearby an elderly couple fly up into the air together, her arms clutch his legs, his outstretched hands clack castanets, associated with music, sensuality and sex. Their faces are angled towards each other, crimped with glee. The walls of the Courtauld Gallery in London are currently crowded with similar images: unsettling and superstitious, erotic and grotesque.

“Goya: The Witches and Old Women Album”, an ambitious new exhibition, opened this week. It marks the first time an institution or individual has tried to reconstitute one of Francisco Goya’s sketchbooks, which were broken up in 1826 after his death.

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The Restoration Service of the Museums of France (RSMF) has authenticated a rare self-portrait by the Spanish master Francisco de Goya owned by the Musée Bonnat in the small town of Bayonne, in Southwest France, "Le Figaro" reports.

The authentication of "Self-Portrait with Spectacles" (circa 1800) is sensational news for the already well-reputed museum, but not so much for the neighboring Musée Goya, in the southeastern town of Castres, which holds a version of that same painting, thought to be the real deal and now deemed a mere copy.

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A five-volume catalogue raisonné of Francisco de Goya’s drawings will be developed in a rare collaboration between the Museo Nacional del Prado and the Santander- and Madrid-based Fundación Botín. The project, which kicks off this month and is due to run for at least five years, will involve researching, cataloguing and conserving nearly 1,000 drawings by Goya, and will conclude with two exhibitions: one at the future Botín Center in Santander, when the first volume is published in 2016, and another at El Prado in 2019—for the museum’s 200th anniversary—when the rest of the volumes are due to be finished.

“The indisputable novelty of the catalogue is in its collaborative execution,” says an official release from the Fundación Botín. The foundation has dedicated €1.7 million to the editorial coordination and management of the project.

Published in News
Monday, 01 December 2014 11:45

Goya Tapestries go on View at the Prado Museum

The Prado Museum has devoted an exhibition to showcase the results of the time the painter Francisco de Goya dedicated to working on tapestries.

The Royal Tapestry Factory’s commission to Francisco de Goya to paint tapestry cartoons in 1775 brought the artist to Madrid where he eventually spent two decades of his life. “Goya in Madrid” analyzes the Spaniard’s works and the sources that inspired him.

A total of 142 pieces, which were the models to create the tapestries to decorate El Escorial and El Pardo palaces, were made by the artist during the period he spent at the Spanish royal court. The cartoons have belonged to the Prado Museum since 1870, when they arrived from the Royal Palace.

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"Los Caprichos," a set of 80 etching and aquatint prints created by the Spanish artist Francisco Goya in 1797 and 1798, are considered to be among the most influential works of art in the Western world.

Strange, graphic and often cryptic, these images were far ahead of their time in their scathing depiction of Spanish social customs and used by Goya to critique everything from the rich and powerful to the excesses of the church.

The Allentown Art Museum is presenting a great opportunity to see this complete set of prized prints that, over the past two centuries, have influenced artists such as Edouard Manet, Pablo Picasso and Jasper Johns.

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Wednesday, 23 April 2014 11:43

Goya Portraits go on View at the Met

Between 1786 and 1788, the Spanish artist Francisco de Goya painted four portraits of the Count of Altamira’s family. For the first time ever, these works, which are dispersed in public and private collections, will be exhibited together at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

“Red Boy,” which depicts Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zuñiga, and “Condesa de Altamira and her daughter, Maria Agustina” are part of the Met’s collection. With help from the Spanish Consulate in New York, the Met was able to procure Goya’s portrait of Count Altamira, Vicente Isabel Ossorio de Miscoso from the Bank of Spain as well as the painting of his son, Vicente Joaquin de Toledo, which belongs to a private collection. The exhibition also includes a fifth portrait of the Count’s middle son, Juan Maria Osorio, which was painted by Goya's protege, Augustín Esteve. The work is on loan from the Cleveland Museum of Art.  

Goya was contracted to paint a series of portraits of people connected to the Bank of San Carlos (now the Bank of Spain), which included the Count, one of the bank’s first directors and an important collector and patron of the arts. The Count was so pleased with Goya’s work that he commissioned the artist to do the rest of the Altamira family portraits. The Altamira paintings are among Goya’s earliest portraits of aristocrats. He was later appointed First Court Painter to the Spanish Crown.

“Goya and the Altamira Family” will be on view at the Met through August 3.

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