By Robert Hughes
Robert Hughes, who has shocked us with complete works on topics as sweeping and intricate because the heritage of Australia (The deadly Shore), the trendy paintings circulate (The surprise of the New), the character of yank paintings (American Visions), and the character of the United States itself as visible via its paintings (The tradition of Complaint), now turns his well known serious eye to at least one of paintings history’s such a lot compelling, enigmatic, and critical figures, Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes. With attribute serious fervor and sure-eyed perception, Hughes brings us the tale of an artist whose existence and paintings bridged the transition from the eighteenth-century reign of the outdated masters to the early days of the nineteenth-century moderns.
With his salient ardour for the artist and the artwork, Hughes brings Goya vividly to lifestyles via wonderful research of an enormous breadth of his paintings. construction upon the ancient proof that exists, Hughes tracks Goya’s improvement, as guy and artist, with no lacking a beat, from the early works commissioned via the Church, via his lengthy, effective, and tempestuous profession at court docket, to the darkly sinister and cryptic paintings he did on the finish of his lifestyles.
In a piece that's right now interpretive biography and cultural epic, Hughes grounds Goya firmly within the context of his time, taking us on a wild romp via Spanish heritage; from the brutality and straightforward violence of road existence to the fiery terrors of the Holy Inquisition to the grave realities of warfare, Hughes exhibits us in brilliant element the cultural forces that formed Goya’s paintings.
Underlying the exhaustive, severe research and the wealthy ancient heritage is Hughes’s personal in detail own dating to his topic. it is a publication expert not just by way of lifelong love and examine, yet via his personal contemporary reviews of mortality and dying. As such it is a uniquely relocating and human publication; with an analogous relentless and fearless intelligence he has dropped at each topic he has ever tackled, Hughes the following transcends biography to carry us a wealthy and fiercely courageous booklet approximately paintings and existence, love and rage, impotence and loss of life. this can be one genius writing at complete potential approximately another—and the result's actually spectacular.
From the Hardcover edition.