Abducting horse (1819 – 1823) by Francisco Goya

Abducting horse - Francisco Goya - 1819 - 1823

Artwork Information

TitleAbducting horse
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Date1819 - 1823
Dimensions25.3 x 35.9 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Abducting horse

The artwork “Abducting horse” is a poignant example of Francisco Goya’s work during the period of 1819 to 1823. This drypoint and etching on paper is associated with the Romanticism movement and belongs to the “Proverbs” series. Its caricature genre is encapsulated within the dimensions of 25.3 x 35.9 cm. Currently, this piece resides within a private collection.

The artwork presents a dynamic and dramatic scene in which a figure is being carried away by a horse that appears to be in mid-leap or abduction. The force of the horse’s movement is palpable, conveyed through vigorous lines and the whirl of the figure’s drapery. The person clutches at the air, giving a sense of urgency and desperation. Despite the static nature of the etching, Goya has captured a moment full of motion and intensity.

The background is minimalistic, pushing the focus onto the interaction between the human and the horse. Shadows are used to effectively define the shapes and add a three-dimensional quality to the figures, a technique characteristic of Goya’s skilled use of the etching medium. One can observe Goya’s exploration of human folly or societal ills, as was common in the artworks belonging to the “Proverbs” series. The stark and almost surreal quality of this depiction aligns well with the Romantic spirit of seeking emotional depth and commenting on the human condition.

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