Portraits of State officials

There is an abundance of portraits of persons of high rank in the work of Goya: Ministers such as Floridablanca or Jovellanos, who had just been named Minister of Justice (Museo del Prado), Godoy, prime minister, ennobled with the title of Prince of Peace and married to a niece of Charles III's (the Countess of Chinchón, daughter of the Infante Luis de Bourbon), painted in the scene of the Guerra de las Naranjas (1801, Academia de San Fernando, Madrid). He painted portraits of military men like generals Urrutia and Ricardos, admiral Mazarredo and the Aragonese defender of Saragossa during the sieges, José Rebolledo de Palafox. Other subjects were the bankers of the Banco de San Carlos, or more modest commissions such as the portrait of the Court Embroiderer Juan López de Robredo.

He also painted members of the clergy such as the Archbishop of Saragossa Joaquín Companys, a protege of the Duke of Osuna. Much later he would paint the famous Juan Antonio Llorente, the first critical historian of the Inquisition.

Another fruitful source of commissions came from businessmen and the nouveau riche, liberal professionals who populated the court and served the servants of the King. They were the representatives of a newly emergent class, the bourgoisie who were displacing the established aristocracy little by little. The portrait of the architect Tiburcio Pérez y Cuervo (1820, Metropolitan, New York) in shirtsleeves, standing with his arms crossed is proof of the ascendancy of a new social class and a new type of bourgeois taste.

Goya's fame went beyond the circle of Spanish clients and attracted foreigners who were travelling through Spain such as the French Ambassador Ferdinand Guillemardet (1798, Louvre, Paris) or the Duke of Wellington, general of the Anglo-Spanish troops in the War of Independence, painted by Goya several times.

See also the portraits of:


GLENDINING, Nigel. Goya : La década de los Caprichos : Retratos 1792-1804. Madrid, 1992. (Catalogue of the exhibition held in the Academia de San Fernando, Madrid).

TOMLINSON, Janis A. Goya en el crepúsculo del Siglo de las Luces. Madrid, 1993. (Or. ed. in Eng.: Goya in the Twilight of Enlightenment. New Haven & London, 1992).

Ricardo Centellas

The Count of Floridablanca
Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos
Manuel Godoy
The Countess of Chinchón
General Ricardos
Ecuestrian portrait of General Palafox
Joaquín Company,
Archbishop of Zaragoza

[ WORK | Evolution | Painting | Etching | Drawing | Subjects | Projects |
Techniques | Sources | Influences | Aragón ]
[ Home | Life | Work | Age | In Aragón | Catalog | Library | Site map ]

InfoGoya 96 is an initiative of the University of Zaragoza, sponsored by the Institution Fernando el Católico of the Deputation of Zaragoza on an Apple Internet Server donated by Apple Computer.

© 1996 InfoGoya.