Should God forgive her She was her mother (1799) by Francisco Goya

Should God forgive her She was her mother - Francisco Goya - 1799

Artwork Information

TitleShould God forgive her She was her mother
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Dimensions21.5 x 15.5 cm
Art MovementRomanticism

About Should God forgive her She was her mother

The artwork titled “Should God forgive her? She was her mother” by Francisco Goya is a notable example of Romanticism created in the year 1799. With dimensions of 21.5 x 15.5 cm, this piece was crafted using the mediums of aquatint and etching on paper. It belongs to the series “Los Caprichos” and falls under the genre of caricature.

The artwork presents a woman standing in a posture that suggests a blend of confidence and nonchalance. She holds a fan gracefully in one hand, symbolizing perhaps the social airs of the epoch or her own personal status. This woman’s attire is of a dark tone with a light shawl wrapped around her shoulders, indicative of fashion of the time but also serving to highlight her figure against the darker background. Her expression is coy, engaging the viewer with an almost knowing gaze, suggesting a narrative or characterization beyond the simple portrayal.

There is text inscribed below the figure, which was a characteristic element in many of the pieces within “Los Caprichos.” This text element often imparted an additional layer of meaning, irony, or social critique, which was a hallmark of Goya’s work in this series. The specific phrase invites contemplation on moral judgment and maternal relationships, which could have been a point of reflection or critique in the context of the social mores of the time.

The use of light and shade, the etching’s fine details, and the expression captured on the subject’s face work together to convey a sense of the Romantic spirit—an emphasis on emotion and individualism. Goya’s talent in using these mediums to evoke complex human emotions and societal observations is evident in this artwork.

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