Lunatic Behind Bars (1824 – 1828) by Francisco Goya

Lunatic Behind Bars - Francisco Goya - 1824 - 1828

Artwork Information

TitleLunatic Behind Bars
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Date1824 - 1828
Dimensions19.1 x 14.5 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationNational Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, US

About Lunatic Behind Bars

The artwork titled “Lunatic Behind Bars” was created by the renowned artist Francisco Goya between 1824 and 1828, reflecting the Romanticism movement’s focus on emotion and individualism. Executed in chalk on paper, the piece measures 19.1 by 14.5 cm and is characterized as a caricature. It is part of the collection at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, United States.

The artwork depicts a figure that appears to be emaciated and wild in expression, trapped behind a barrier that suggests a set of bars. His eyes are wide and staring, and his mouth is open which might infer a silent scream or perhaps an utterance that cannot be heard through the artwork itself. The lines are rough and sketch-like, which gives the figure a sense of immediacy and rawness. The art piece communicates a strong sense of confinement and the psychological turmoil of the person depicted, resonating with the Romantic movement’s exploration of the depths of human experience and emotion. The overall composition implies a narrative of struggle and mental disturbance, leaving a haunting and lasting impression.

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