NEW BRUNSWICK.- This fall, the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University will present Dark Dreams: The Prints of Francisco Goya, A Selection from the Collection of the Arthur Ross Foundation, an exhibition of 100 prints demonstrating Goya’s technical and creative achievements as a printmaker. The exhibition will present two complete suites of prints by Goya (1746-1828), Los Caprichos and Los Disparates. A special display of 12 works by Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Enrique Chagoya (born 1953) and Yinka Shonibare MBE (born 1962) is also included and demonstrates the continuing impact of Goya’s imagery and imagination on successive generations of artists, including those of the 20th and 21st centuries. The exhibition opens on September 2 and continues through December 14. A public celebration will take place at the museum on Tuesday, September 16 from 5 to 7pm.
The exhibition features Goya’s first major series of etchings, Los Caprichos (1799), comprising eighty works treating subjects ranging from witches and goblins to critical commentary on the contemporary state of education, religion, and relations between different social classes of that time. The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters (El sueño de la razòn produce monstruos), plate 43 from Los Caprichos, shows an artist overtaken by sleep and creatures of the night and has come to represent Goya’s artistic project of giving visual form to even the most irrational ideas and actions. Christine Giviskos, co-curator of the exhibition, noted that “Goya’s prints allow us to see his brilliant mind and his sure hand at work. Not only do they showcase Goya’s imaginative and modern subjects and his accomplished technique, the prints also represent the new directions of his work at the turn of the nineteenth century, when Goya devoted more time to private projects and to mastering the technical demands of printmaking.”
Goya revisited the monstrous themes of Los Caprichos in the late etchings he referred to as Los Disparates (“Follies”), which he created between 1816 and 1824, but were first published in 1864 with the title Los Proverbios (“Proverbs”). In addition to Los Disparates, the exhibition will also include Bullfight in a divided ring (1825), from the series of The Bulls of Bordeaux, a late work demonstrating Goya’s success with the new medium of lithography.
The rare first-edition Goya prints in the exhibition are generously lent by the Arthur Ross Foundation, New York. Founded in 1955, the Arthur Ross Foundation is a philanthropic organization which supports the visual arts, historic preservation, nurture of the environment, higher education, and research in national and international issues. The Foundation also collects works of art for the purpose of making these objects available for public exhibition.
The exhibition is co-curated by Marilyn Symmes, curator in charge, and Christine Giviskos, associate curator of 19thcentury European art, both curators of the Zimmerli Art Museum’s Morse Research Center for Graphic Arts.