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Cruel Folly
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
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Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de

Fuendetodos, Zaragoza (Spain), 1746 - Bordeaux (France), 1828

Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de See author's file

Cruel Folly

1815 - 1819. Etching, Aquatint, Burnisher on wove paper.
Not on display

Disparates, 6, Cruel Folly. The title of the plate comes from an artist’s proof now at the Museo Lázaro Galdeano in Madrid. Before this state proof with the handwritten title, Cruel Folly came to light, Beruete and Camón Aznar called the plate Foolish Fury because of its protagonist’s appearance. They described him as a furious man with bulging eyes and hair standing on end who has knocked down one man with a monkey’s face and is now holding a pike with which he is about to attack another who is prepared to repel that aggression. The other figures appear either contrite or frightened and various are leaving with bowed heads, as they understand that there is no way this is going to end well. Despite being one of the drawings with the clearest graphic definition, it was significantly modified after its transfer to the engraving plate (G02174). There, the scene becomes nocturnal and the soldier’s shed turns into a ruinous wall on the outskirts of the city, while the figure in the foreground now holds a rifle. At first he held a pike, as he does in the drawing, but Goya added thick strokes of red chalk to suggest the form of the rifle butt and trigger guard. The engraving also has an added figure dramatically entangled in the protagonist’s his legs, while the man who had fallen to the ground amidst other figures in the drawing’s central group has now disappeared. Finally, the man at the right of the drawing, with his head bowed and his hands in his pockets, has been transformed into a cloaked figure that mysteriously turns his back on the furious protagonist. Cloaked figures like the one on the right are customary in Goya’s work, especially in his Caprichos, and they are always associated with lies and irrationality, just as male figures with their hands on their waist and their legs spread have been associated with sexual relaxation—for example in the print titled And his house burns (G02106), or various drawings, including Three Gentlemen and Three Ladies Dancing (D04376) and Blind Man in Love with his Filly (D04044). As with the other Disparates, it is difficult to explain the print’s subject. Valeriano Bozal considers it a street fight: yet another tense, furious depiction of violent emotions and of violence itself, an image of one aspect of everyday life made universal by the location and its darkness. (Text from: Matilla, J.M.: Disparate cruel, in: Goya en tiempos de Guerra, Madrid, Museo del Prado, 2008).


Technical data

Related artworks

Cruel Folly
Red wash, Red chalk on laid paper, 1815 - 1819
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Cruel Folly
Etching, Aquatint, Burnisher, Retroussage on ivory paper, 1815 - 1819
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Inventory number
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Cruel Folly
1815 - 1819
Etching; Aquatint; Burnisher
Wove paper
Height: 250 mm; Width: 362 mm; Height of the plate mark: 243 mm; Width of the plate mark: 357 mm
Disparates [estampa], 6
Georges Prôvot, París; venta Prôvot, Hôtel Drouot, París, 10/04/1935; Kunsthandlung Helmut H. Rumbler, Frankfurt; Acquisition for the Prado Museum with funds from the Legacy of the Villaescusa 1992.

Bibliography +

Lefort, Paul, Essai d'un catalogue raisonné de l'oeuvre gravé et litographié de Francisco Goya, Gazette des Beaux-Arts, X, 1868, pp. 165-180.

Lefort, Paul, Francisco Goya. Étude biographique et critique suivie de l'essai d'un catalogue raisonné de son oeuvre gravé et lithographié, Librairie Renouard, París:, 1877, pp. nº 129.

Beruete y Moret, Aureliano de, Goya grabador, III, Blass y Cía, Madrid:, 1918, pp. 109-110, nº 190, il. 49-2.

Loga, Valerian von, Francisco de Goya, G. Grotesche, Berlin, 1921, pp. nº 698.

Young, Blamire, The Proverbs of Goya, Jonathan Cape, Londres:, 1923, pp. 101-111.

Mayer, August L., Francisco de Goya, Labor, Barcelona, 1925, pp. 277, nº V (698)-6.

Wight, F.S., The Revulsions of Goya. Subconscious Communications in the Etchings, The Journal of Aesthetics & Art Criticism, V, 1946, pp. 24-26.

Camón Aznar, José, Los disparates de Goya y sus dibujos preparatorios, Instituto Amatller de Arte Hispánico, Barcelona, 1951, pp. 57-60, [123-125], nº 2.

Delteil, Loys, Goya. Facsimil 1922, Collectors editions; Da Capo Press, Nueva York, 1969, pp. nº 207.

Gassier, Pierre y Wilson-Bareau, Juliet, Vie et oeuvre de Francisco de Goya: l`oeuvre complet illustré: peintures, dessins, gravures, Office du Livre, Fribourg, 1970, pp. nº 1579.

Sayre, Eleanor A., The Changing Image: Prints by Francisco Goya, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston:, 1974, pp. 260, nº 211.

Gassier, Pierre, Vida y obra de Francisco de Goya: reproducción de su obra completa: pinturas, dibujos y grabados, Juventud, Barcelona, 1974, pp. nº 1579.

Gassier, Pierre, Dibujos de Goya. Estudios para grabados y pinturas, II, Noguer, Barcelona, 1975, pp. 440-441, nº 294.

Holo, Selma Reuben, Goya. Los Disparates, Museum of Art, Washington State University Press, Washington:, 1976, pp. 31.

Hofmann, W., ''Disparate Cruel'', en: Goya. Das Zeitalter der Revolution 1789-1830, Prestel Verlag; Hamburguer Kunsthalle, Munich; Hamburgo, 1980, pp. 199, nº 149.

Camón Aznar, José, Francisco de Goya, IV, Caja de Ahorros de Zaragoza, Aragón y Rioja, Zaragoza, 1982, pp. 90-91.

Harris, Tomas, Goya. Engravings and lithographs, II, Alan Wofsy Fine Arts, San Francisco:, 1983, pp. 382-383, nº 253.

Bozal, Valeriano, Imagen de Goya, Lumen, Madrid, 1983, pp. 260.

Glendinning, Nigel, ''La problemática historia de los Disparates y su interpretación carnavalesca'', en: Francisco de Goya grabador. Instantáneas. Disparates, III, Caser, Madrid:, 1992, pp. 19-32, [25].

Vega, Jesusa, Museo del Prado: catálogo de estampas, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1992, pp. 109, nº 440.

Pérez Sánchez, Alfonso E., ''Disparates'', en: Goya grabador, Fundación Juan March, Madrid:, 1994, pp. 198-219, [205].

Bozal, Valeriano, 'Disparates grotescos'', en: Disparates, Francisco Goya. Tres visiones, Calcografía Nacional, Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid:, 1996, pp. 43.

Carrete, J., Matilla, J.M., Aullón de Haro, P., Bozal, V., Glendinning, N. y Vega, J., Disparates, Francisco Goya. Tres visiones, Calcografía Nacional, Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid:, 1996, pp. 105, 109, [126-129, 168-169], nº 6-7 y 26.

Fundación Lázaro Galdiano, Goya en la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano, Fundación Lázaro Galdiano, Madrid:, 1999, pp. 209, 212-213, nº 49.

Goya, Electa, Roma:, 2000, pp. 122-123, nº 38.

Calcografía Nacional, Calcografía Nacional. Catálogo general, II, Real Academia de San Fernando, Madrid, 2004, pp. 483, nº 3978.

Águeda Villar, Mercedes, ''Los Disparates en la Colección Lázaro Galdiano'', en: Goya. Imaginación romántica y disparates en la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano, Fundación Caja Navarra, Pamplona:, 2005, pp. 22-31, [23-24, 26].

André-Deconchat, S., Assante di Panzillo, M. y Wilson-Bareau, Juliet, ''Catalogue'', en: Goya graveur, Nicolas Chaudun y Paris musées, París, 2008, pp. 284, nº 186.

Matilla, José Manuel, ''Disparate cruel'', en: Goya en tiempos de guerra, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, 2008, pp. 478-479, nº 177.

Other inventories +

Inv. Nuevas Adquisiciones (iniciado en 1856). Núm. 2298.

Inscriptions +

Inscribed. Front, upper central area

Prov. 6
Inscribed. Back, lower left corner

Engraved. Front

Update date: 30-09-2022 | Registry created on 28-04-2015

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