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Francisco Goya Gallery     Prints.     Full biography.
Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828)
By the 1780s Goya was Spain's leading painter, specializing in religious pictures and portraits. He left a ruthlessly penetrating record of his patrons and private expressions of introspection, moral objectivity, and caustic commentary on his times. A 1792 illness left Goya deaf and mentally broken. He turned inward and began painting dark, disturbing, private works. His etchings expressed his distaste for the corrupt, fanatical establishment, particularly the Church, for whom he worked. During the Napoleonic wars, Goya recorded his reactions to the occupying French army’s atrocities. By 1814, the repressive Spanish monarchy was restored and Goya resumed painting the royals, whom he portrayed with at times unflattering frankness.
3rd of MAY 1808
Marquesa de Santiago
Reclining Nude


Mural tranferred to Canvas (146 x 83 cms.) Prado Museum, Madrid

This disturbing painting is one of the fourteen known as the "black paintings" with which Goya decorated the dining an living rooms of his home, called the "Quinta del Sordo", which he bought in 1819 on the banks of Madrid's Manzanares river. Seventy years after they were painted, the house's owner decided to have them taken down and transferred to canvas given their deteriorated condition. Some years later he donated them to the Spanish state. "Saturn Devouring one of his Sons" was one of the six works decorating the dining room. It depicts a mythological theme- about the god Saturn or Cronos- acting as an allegorical representation of time. The god devoured, as time does to all that it creates, the children born to his wife Cibele: he feared that one would dethrone him.
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