Can’t anyone untie us? (1799) by Francisco Goya

Can't anyone untie us? - Francisco Goya - 1799

Artwork Information

TitleCan't anyone untie us?
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Dimensions21.8 x 15.2 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Can't anyone untie us?

“Can’t anyone untie us?” is an etching on paper, created by the artist Francisco Goya in the year 1799. As part of the Romanticism art movement, the artwork stands as a caricature within the “Los Caprichos” series. Measuring 21.8 cm by 15.2 cm, the artwork is currently held in a private collection.

The artwork intricately renders a nightmarish scene where a large owl with glaring eyes is seemingly perched upon the back of a bent-over figure, casting an ominous presence. Below the owl, straining against the weight of the creature, the central figure appears with their head turned toward the viewer, as if caught in a moment of desperation or terror. The precise etching lines capture intense emotion and create a sense of movement and dynamic tension between the figure and the owl. Additionally, another figure appears to be prostrated on the ground, adding to the sense of distress and entanglement suggested by the artwork’s title. The piece is rich with symbolism and conveys a powerful atmosphere in line with Goya’s often critical and satirical view of societal issues of his time.

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