Out hunting for teeth (1799) by Francisco Goya

Out hunting for teeth - Francisco Goya - 1799

Artwork Information

TitleOut hunting for teeth
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Dimensions21.9 x 15.2 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Out hunting for teeth

The artwork entitled “Out hunting for teeth,” created by the esteemed artist Francisco Goya in 1799, is an etching on paper measuring 21.9 cm by 15.2 cm. Embodying the Romanticism art movement, this piece is classified as a caricature and is part of Goya’s famous series “Los Caprichos.” Currently, the artwork is held within a private collection.

In the artwork, we are presented with a powerful nocturnal scene rendered in etching. It portrays two figures engaged in a disturbing and peculiar interaction. The central figure, who appears to have a ghastly, almost ghostlike countenance, is forcibly having a tooth extracted by the other individual. The person performing the extraction conveys a sense of desperate intensity that is mirrored by the pulled back posture and contorted expression of the suffering individual. This dark depiction is steeped in shadow and contrast, with the etching lines deeply suggesting the forms and textures of the clothing, as well as the anguished expressions on the characters’ faces.

Goya’s mastery of light and shadow is evident, adding dramatic effect and drawing the viewer’s focus to the grim action taking place. The presence of the text “A riza de dientes,” although its precise interpretation may vary, further enhances the enigmatic qualities of the scene, underlying the satirical or critical nature of the work as Goya intended with his series. The artwork encapsulates Goya’s critical perspective on society, using grotesque allegory to comment on the folly and superstitions of the time.

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