The Kite (1777 – 1778) by Francisco Goya

The Kite - Francisco Goya - 1777 - 1778

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Artwork Information

TitleThe Kite
ArtistFrancisco Goya
Date1777 - 1778
Mediumoil,canvas
Dimensions269 x 285 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
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About The Kite

“The Kite” is an oil on canvas artwork by Francisco Goya, created during the years 1777 to 1778. This piece exemplifies the Romanticism movement and falls within the genre painting category. The artwork is sizable, with dimensions of 269 cm in height and 285 cm in width.

The artwork depicts a lively scene of leisurely outdoor activity centered around the flying of a kite, which is an emblem of playful whimsy. A mixed group of young and older figures are scattered throughout the canvas, engaging in various interactions. Dominating the foreground, a well-dressed man, presumably orchestrating the flight, points upward, leading the viewer’s eye towards the kite aloft in the sky. His dynamic pose and elegant attire mark him as a central character in this narrative.

Other individuals appear engrossed in conversation or merriment, contributing to a sense of social camaraderie. On the left, a couple seems involved in an intimate dialogue, detached from the primary action. Closer to the center, a gentleman lounges on the ground, looking up in admiration, while a nearby figure, perched on a tree, assists in maneuvering the kite. To the right, two women, one in a traditional long skirt, engage with one another, further away but still part of the overall tableau.

In the context of Goya’s oeuvre, “The Kite” is illustrative of his early work, which often explored lighthearted themes before his later transition into more somber and critical subject matters. The composition’s balance of figures and nature, along with the use of light to create depth, showcases Goya’s mastery in capturing both the human form and the vivacity of mundane moments. The bucolic background and the relaxed postures speak to the idyllic charm of 18th-century life, a theme beloved by artists of the Romantic period.

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