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giugno 30, 2020 - Fondation Beyeler

The Fondation Beyeler is presenting one of the most important exhibitions ever devoted to Francisco de Goya outside of Spain

Comunicato Stampa disponibile solo in lingua originale. 

May 17–August 16, 2020

The #fondationbeyeler is presenting one of the most important exhibitions ever devoted to Francisco de Goya outside of Spain.

For this show at the #fondationbeyeler, Francisco de Goya’s (1746–1828) ambivalent and contradictory position as one of the last outstanding portraitists in the European court artist tradition and as the inventor of enigmatic pictures realized in a self-created space of artistic freedom is the starting point to understanding his art. After all, herein lies the key to fathoming Goya’s modernism.

Many of the artist’s works depict human behavior in terms of an inscrutability and complexity that irrevocably derive from societal certainties and conventions. It is a pictorial world where moral objection is put to the test. Goya made use of traditional iconography, but just like morality, it too had lost its binding nature.

One of Goya’s most famous pictorial inventions bears the programmatic title The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters (sheet 43 of “Los Caprichos”). Whether it is the sleeping or, as in the Spanish title, dreaming reason that is being addressing here—in both cases it is scarcely the kind of reason that gives shape to Enlightenment utopias. Goya doesn’t point a reproachful finger. At most he issues an ironic warning, because he needs his multifarious monsters to push open the gate to a world where the boundaries between reality and dream are blurred. In his art, Goya is simultaneously a dreamer and an exorcist, perpetrator and victim. He approaches the drama of reason and unreason, of dreams and nightmares with the gaze of a spectator. His work bears testimony to the grotesque and cruel impositions that human existence is subject to.

In its selection of works and their presentation, the Fondation Beyeler’s exhibition is guided by the idea of highlighting the complex and ambiguous totality that makes up Goya’s lifework, drawing from the wealth of his paintings, drawings, and prints. For it is only in an equitable juxtaposition of paintings and works on paper that the uniqueness of Goya’s pictorial world becomes tangible. At the #fondationbeyeler, the show’s visitors will embark on a journey into the comprehensible and the inconceivable, into the multivalent and the nonsensical. The at once surprising and unsettling juxtapositions of different pictorial realms open up unimagined horizons of experience and thus continually fascinate the beholder anew. This is one of the reasons why Goya’s works still represent today, just as they did a century ago, an intellectual as well as an aesthetic challenge.

The exhibition at the #fondationbeyeler will focus on Goya’s mature and late creative period. To do justice to the formal and content-related wealth of his oeuvre, the show will include the entire spectrum of pictorial categories (genre scenes and portraits as well as still lifes and history painting) along with pictorial creations specific to the artist (images of bull fights, mental asylums, Inquisition tribunals, and witches’ sabbaths).

The presentation brings together over seventy paintings along with an assortment of some sixty superb drawings and thirty exquisite prints. Rarely seen paintings from Spanish private collections will be featured at the #fondationbeyeler, some for the first time, together with key works from the most renowned European and American museums and private holdings. The exhibition has been developed in cooperation with the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid.

The exhibition is generously supported by:

Hansjörg Wyss, Wyss Foundation

Athene Stiftung Novartis Sulger-Stiftung

Further information:

Silke Kellner-Mergenthaler & Team
PR / Media Relations
Tel. + 41 (0)61 645 97 21, presse@fondationbeyeler.ch, www.fondationbeyeler.ch #fondationbeyeler, Beyeler Museum AG, Baselstrasse 77, CH-4125 Riehen

Fondation Beyeler opening hours: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily, Wednesday 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.