Francisco de Goya

Unhappy mother! (Madre infeliz!)

Clasificación
Unhappy mother! (Madre infeliz!)
Datos Generales
Cronología
Ca. 1812 - 1815
Dimensiones
157 x 206 mm
Técnica y soporte
Etching, burnished aquatint and drypoint
Reconocimiento de la autoría de Goya
Undisputed work
Ficha: realización/revisión
15 Dec 2010 / 14 Apr 2021
Historia

See Sad presentiments of what must come to pass.

The title was handwritten on the print by Goya in the first and only series that is known to have been printed at the time the works were created, which the artist gave to his friend Agustín Ceán Bermúdez. Therefore, the title was etched into the plate at a later date and left unchanged as of the first edition of the Disasters of War printed by the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Madrid in 1863, after the printing of the series in the possession of Ceán Bermúdez.

There is a surviving preparatory drawing for this print which is housed in the Prado Museum in Madrid.

Análisis artístico

Two men are shown carrying the body of a woman who may have fainted from hunger. Next to these figures a child cries inconsolably, covering her face with her hands. In the background we can see a body on the ground, perhaps the corpse of a victim of the famine.

Goya uses aquatint for the sky and part of the ground: it is difficult to tell where one ends and the other begins. The device creates an unreal, misty setting that heightens the drama of the scene. There are no spatial references in the work, although judging from the darkness it is likely that the scene takes place at night. The artist has placed three points of light in the middle of this darkness: one larger, light area in the centre of the composition comprising the men carrying the woman; another smaller one situated on the right, representing the small child crying, separated from her mother; and the last area of light in the background on the right, highlighting the abandoned corpse.

Conservación

La plancha se conserva en la Calcografía Nacional (cat. 301).

Exposiciones
  • Goya
    Ministry of Foreing Affairs
    Burdeos
    1951
    organized by the Bordeaux City Hall, consultant editor Gilberte Martin-Méry. From May 16th to June 30th 1951
  • Goya. Drawings, Etchings and Lithographs
    Goya. Drawings
    London
    1954
    from June 12th to July 25th 1954
  • Goya. Das Zeitalter der Revolucionen. Kunst um 1800 (1980 – 1981)
    Hamburger Kunsthalle
    Hamburg
    1980
  • Francisco de Goya
    Museo d'Arte Moderna
    Lugano
    1996
    exhibition celebrated from September 22nd to November 17th.
  • Francisco Goya. Sein leben im spiegel der graphik. Fuendetodos 1746-1828 Bordeaux. 1746-1996
    Galerie Kornfeld
    Bern
    1996
    from November 21st 1996 to January 1997
  • Francisco Goya. Capricci, follie e disastri della guerra
    San Donato Milanese
    2000
    Opere grafiche della Fondazione Antonio Mazzotta
  • Goya. Opera grafica
    Pinacoteca del Castello di San Giorgio
    Legnano
    2006
    exhibition celebrated from December 16th 2006 to April 1st 2007
  • Goya en tiempos de guerra
    Museo Nacional del Prado
    Madrid
    2008
    consultant editor Manuela B. Mena Marqués, from April 14th to July 13th 2008
  • Goya et la modernité
    Pinacothèque de Paris
    París
    2013
    from October 11st 2013 to March 16th 2014
Bibliografía
  • Aureliano de Beruete Y Moret
    Goya, grabador
    MadridBlass S.A.
    1918
    cat. 152
  • Tomás Harris
    Goya engravings and lithographs, vol. I y II.
    Bruno Cassirer
    1964
    cat. 170
  • GASSIER, Pierre y WILSON, Juliet
    Vie et ouvre de Francisco de Goya
    ParísOffice du livre
    1970
    cat. 1074
  • SANTIAGO, Elena M. (coordinadora)
    Catálogo de las estampas de Goya en la Biblioteca Nacional
    MadridMinisterio de Educación y Cultura, Biblioteca Nacional
    1996
    cat. 259
  • José Manuel Matilla
    El Libro de los Desastres de la Guerra
    MadridMuseo del Prado
    2000
    II, pp. 98-100
Enlaces externos
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