Francisco de Goya

The Consecration of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga as the Patron Saint of Youth (La consagración de San Luis Gonzaga como Patrono de la Juventud)

The Consecration of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga as the Patron Saint of Youth (La consagración de San Luis Gonzaga como Patrono de la Juventud)
Datos Generales
Ca. 1763 - 1764
Museum of Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain
127 x 88 cm
Técnica y soporte
Oil on canvas
Reconocimiento de la autoría de Goya
Attributed work
Jaraba Town Hall (Zaragoza)
Ficha: realización/revisión
28 Dec 2009 / 27 Jun 2023
en depósito

Arnaiz and Buendía have suggested that this work was located in the Seminario de Nobles (Jesuit school) belonging to the Calatayud Society of Jesus, and that following the expulsion of the order from Spain in 1767 the painting was taken to the Chapel of Nuestra Señora de Jaraba.

It was entrusted to the Museum of Zaragoza in 1985.

Análisis artístico

This oval canvas depicts the consecration of the young Aloysius Gonzaga as Patron Saint of Youth by Pope Benedict XIII. In this scene, the pontiff is addressing the faithful, pointing to the sky where we can see the saint wearing a Jesuit cassock and holding a Madonna lily, a symbol of purity. He is being carried up into the heavens by a host of angels. To reinforce the Pope's message, Goya has given him a speech scroll which reads INSPICE, ET FAC SECUNDUM EXEMPLAR ("Look, and do likewise"). In the lower part of the composition we can see a card which has been covered with white paint and inscribed with the words S. ALOYSIUS GONZA. J. A. SS. P. BENEDICTO BONUS EL EXEMPLA.

In the background we can make out the form of a temple where another scene is taking place: the burial of the saint's remains. The device of linking two episodes from the same story in the same space was very common in the baroque period.

The painting as a whole is an exaltation of the Jesuit order. The composition corresponds to baroque models, with a very marked diagonal line which divides the work into two spaces: sacred and earthly. The execution is still clumsy and severe. It is possible to detect the influence of José Luzán in the Neapolitan and Roman rococo style of certain elements such as the pastel tones employed for the clothing of the group of youths on the right.

The work is of dubious attribution, and various Goya experts do not include it in their catalogues, although others argue that this is an early work produced during the artist's training period.

  • Goya joven (1746-1776) y su entorno
    Museo e Instituto Camón Aznar
    consultant editorl José Rogelio Buendía. November 21st to December 20th 1986
  • Goya en Ponce
    Museo de Arte de Ponce
    consultant editor María Luisa Cancela Ramírez Arellano. From May 13th to September 30th 1995
  • Goya e Italia
    Museo de Zaragoza
    organized by the Fundación Goya en Aragóna, consultant editor Joan Sureda Pons. From June 1st to September 15th 2008
  • BUENDÍA, José Rogelio (comisario) and ARNAIZ, José Manuel
    Goya inédito en Jaraba
    Galería Antiqvaria
    pp. 38-41
  • BUENDÍA, José Rogelio (comisario)
    Goya joven (1746 – 1776) y su entorno
    ZaragozaCaja de Ahorros y Monte de Piedad de Zaragoza, Aragón y Rioja
    p. 74, cat. 3 y lám. III
    Goya y Aragón. Familia, amistades y encargos artísticos
    col. Col. Mariano de Pano y Ruata
    ZaragozaCaja de Ahorros de la Inmaculada de Aragón
    pp. 45, 46 y p. 45 (il.)
  • BELTRAN LLORIS, Miguel, et al.
    Museo de Zaragoza. Guía
    ZaragozaGobierno de Aragón
    p. 332 and p. 333 (il.)
  • SUREDA PONS, Joan (comisario)
    Goya e Italia, 2 vols.
    ZaragozaFundación Goya en Aragón y Turner
    p. 332 -333
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