Masters in the Work of Francisco de Goya Lucientes (1746-1828)
Francisco Goya is known widely as one the most important of Spanish artists of all time and is often heralded as a pivotal figure in the transition to modern art. Straddling two transformational centuries, Goya emerged as one of the key artistic voices of his generation and ushered in the innovative spirit of the 19th century.
Born and raised in the small town of Fuendetodos in northeastern Spain, Goya discovered his artistic skill at a remarkably early age. Indeed, he was yet in his teens when he moved to Madrid to study with Raphael Mengs, one of the leading Neoclassical painters of the late 18th century. His ascent to success was from that point quite rapid; soon after he was appointed a royal court painter for the Spanish monarchy, achieving the most supreme rank of court painters, the Primer Pintor de Càmara, in 1799.
Though accomplishing this prestigious pinnacle, Goya was nevertheless already reconsidering the purpose of his paintings. As the new century dawned, Goya rapidly abandoned the Rococo vibrancy that had dominated his court compositions in the late 18th century and instead adopted a much more sober palette. His painterly technique loosened as well, but what was perhaps most powerful in this transition was his shift in subject matter. His passions for politics and Spanish identity ran deep, so much so that the mood of his compositions seemingly darkened in relation to the Spanish political situation.
This profundity grew exponentially over the early decades of the 19th century, culminating in the early 1820s with his Pinturas Negras, or "Black Paintings." Painted on the walls of his own Madrid home, these dark and foreboding paintings – including the iconic Saturn Devouring His Son – revealed the extent to which political tensions – as well as fears of insanity and total isolation – dominated Goya's final works. Though Goya died in relative obscurity, his works have since been exalted as a turning point in art history. His ability to so grippingly render the raw emotions of his fellow man – as exemplified in paintings such as Third of May, 1808 – transformed Goya from court painter to contemporary innovator, making his work a key landmark in the march toward modernism. He developed techniques and purveyed a style that dramatically influenced dramatically the masters who followed him, among them Pablo Picasso and Francis Bacon.
Goya Experts consists of a group of researchers, specialists and appraisers, working together to authenticate and appraise the works of Francisco de Goya. Our specialists employ advanced forensics including X-ray photography, documentary research, and our team includes native Spanish speakers with strong scholarly, credentialed backgrounds. Goya Experts will certify Goya's paintings and drawings and with a favorable determination, will issue a Certificate of Authenticity (COA.) If you have a Goya painting or drawing you would like to authenticate or appraise please contact us.