Portraits: Introduction

Goya was highly appreciated in his time as a portrait painter. Portraits formed the greater part of his production and were his main source of income (he charged between 10,000 and 15,000 reales for a portrait in 1800). The satisfaction of the customer brought new commissions or purchases of other works, as was the case with the Duke of Osuna. Goya captivated his clients with the profound psychological quality of his portraits, quickly but well painted, and the naturalness of the study, although he did not hesitate to use a grid when he thought it necessary. His brushwork was based on the "strategy of illusion", learnt from Velazquez. Goya adopted any innovation he discovered in the extensive Royal collection, on his travels or in his friends' houses and used them in the service of his art. His long life and his keenness to learn explain his ever-changing and protean style.

See the portraits of:

  • The Royal Family (From Charles III to Ferdinand VII)
  • The Infante Carlos MarĂ­a Isidro of Bourbon
  • Floridablanca and the Nobility of Spain
  • High Officials
  • Family and Friends
  • Bibliography

    GLENDINING, Nige. 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 Duke of Osuna's Family
    The Duke of Osuna
    The Infante Carlos María Isidro of Bourbon
    José Moñino, Count of Floridablanca

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