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Le 15/12/2021

The Goya Experience at the Museum of Fine Arts of Lille

From 15 October 2021 to 14 February 2022, come feel the Goya experience in the beautiful Museum of Fine Arts right in the city center of Lille.

The Goya Experience is a great exhibition of a new genre that allows the visitors to dive in Goya’s universe. But first of all, who is Francisco de Goya?

Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes is a Spanish painter and printmaker born in 1746 and died in 1828 in Bordeaux. He is considered the most important Spanish artist of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. He was a court painter to the Spanish Crown, therefore his part of his early career is marked by portraits of the Spanish aristocracy and royalty.

During the war Napoleon fought in Spain, although not speaking his thoughts in public, Goya expressed them in his Disasters of War series of prints. His most famous pieces of work includes the Caprichos (The Whims), which are a dark variety of paintings, concerning insanity, mental asylums, witches, fantastic creatures, and political corruption.

In 1873, two of Goya’s paintings, The Young and The Old Women, were bought by Lille’s Museum, representing the first Spanish paintings entering the collection of the museum. The exhibition in the museum therefore concentrates on those two central pieces and is organized around it.

Goya’s paintings inspired and influenced lots of important 19th and 20th century’s painters. Indeed, in 1904, Matisse found again the thrill of painting by discovering Goya’s paintings in Lille’s Museum. Following his visit, he said “in homage to the Museum of Fine Arts in Lille, when I first felt so close to real paintings with The Young and The Old Women from Goya, half a century ago”. The paintings also inspired Dali, who colored and retitled most of Goya’s engravings, Picasso, and Antonio Saura.

The Spanish prize awarded to the best cinematographic productions are named after the painter, as he also inspired many filmmakers such as Federico Fellini, Sergio Leone, Guillermo del Toro, for some of their movie scenes, for example, for the infamous western the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

The exhibition allows the visitor an immersive experience with more than 80 original pieces of art half of which are signed from Goya, and other artworks from Delacroix, Manet, inspired from Goya’s paintings. The exhibition includes videos and soundscapes that makes the visit aesthetic and sensory. It has also intended to be made in an eco-responsible approach to present the artwork.