Francisco de Goya y Lucientes
The Caprices (Los Caprichos) is a set of eighty etchings created between 1797 and 1798. On view are thirteen examples of the Brooklyn Museum’s rare “trial proof” set, which is composed of early impressions of a print made by the artist prior to the published edition. In the first part of the series, Goya critiques the characters, institutions, and values of early modern Spanish society; the second focuses on bizarre and macabre imagery.
The most famous image, The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters (El sueño de la razon produce monstruos), conveys a purposeful ambiguity regarding the conflict between Spanish religiosity and Enlightenment thought: sueño may refer both to the sleep or absence of reason, and to the dream of reason (reason unchecked) that produces monsters. This idea reappears later in the exhibition in Robert Longo’s work.
Etching and aquatint on laid paper
Sheet: 11 7/8 x 8 in. (30.2 x 20.3 cm)
Image: 6 15/16 x 4 1/2 in. (17.6 x 11.4 cm) (show scale)
A. Augustus Healy Fund, Frank L. Babbott Fund, and Carll H. de Silver Fund
This item is not on view
Francisco de Goya y Lucientes (Spanish, 1746-1828). Blow (Sopla), 1797-1798. Etching and aquatint on laid paper, Sheet: 11 7/8 x 8 in. (30.2 x 20.3 cm). Brooklyn Museum, A. Augustus Healy Fund, Frank L. Babbott Fund, and Carll H. de Silver Fund, 37.33.69 (Photo: , 37.33.69_PS9.jpg)
overall, 37.33.69_PS9.jpg., 2017
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Tell me more.
You're looking at Sopla, or "Blow" from Francisco Goya's "Los Caprichos" or "The Whims" print series. It's a particularly odd one, isn't it? In this print, a tall witch uses a young boy as a bellows, holding him by his legs and using gas from his bottom to set fire to a brazier.
Many of Goya's prints from "Los Caprichos" reference witches, witchcraft, and superstition, as well as cruelty, all of which are on display here.