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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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