The Famous American, Mariano Ceballos (1825) by Francisco Goya

The Famous American, Mariano Ceballos - Francisco Goya - 1825

Artwork Information

TitleThe Famous American, Mariano Ceballos
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationNational Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, US

About The Famous American, Mariano Ceballos

The artwork titled “The Famous American, Mariano Ceballos” was crafted by Francisco Goya in 1825. It falls under the Romanticism movement and is classified as a genre painting. Currently, this work of art is housed at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC in the United States.

The artwork depicts a dynamic scene of bullfighting, capturing the intensity and drama of this traditional spectacle. In the center, a figure presumably representing Mariano Ceballos is engaged in a moment of confrontation with a bull. The central figure is portrayed mid-action, aboard a horse, wielding a lance and appearing to command attention with a dramatic pose. The bull’s posture, with arched back and horns pointed towards the horse and rider, indicates a state of aggression and confrontation.

Surrounding this focal point are other participants on horseback, some in the midst of their own encounters with bulls, suggesting a chaotic environment typical of bullfighting arenas. Spectators around the activity are portrayed en masse, with individual figures less distinct, contributing to the sense of a crowded, engaged audience. The piece evokes the movement and energy of the event, with lines and shading creating a sense of speed and motion.

Goya’s work often reflected social and cultural themes of his time, and in this artwork, he masterfully captures the essence of Romanticism with a strong emotional and theatrical presentation of a local tradition, emphasizing the human experience and the rawness of the spectacle.

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