Two Goya paintings sold at auction in New York for more than $16.4 million

Two Goya paintings sold at auction in New York for more than $16.4 million

Two portraits painted by Spanish artist Francisco Goya (1746-1828) were sold at auction in New York for more than $16.4 million, the auction house Christie’s said on its official website.

The canvases depict Maria Vicenta Barroso Valdes sitting on a sofa with a small white dog and her mother Leonora Antonia Valdes de Barroso with a fan in her hands. Both paintings were commissioned by Salvador Anselmo Barroso de Barrette, Maria’s father and Leonora’s husband, in 1805.

Both women who posed for the artist were reportedly not aristocrats, but members of the bourgeoisie. At the end of the 18th and beginning of the 19th centuries, the growing Spanish bourgeoisie increasingly commissioned painters to paint their portraits in order to emphasize their significant position and wealth.

Both portraits were last offered for sale in 1951 and since then they have been in a private collection. The price of the lot broke the previous record of $7.4 million paid by the J. Paul Getty Museum for Goya’s Bullfighting at a Sotheby’s auction in London in 1992. Today, adjusted for inflation, that amount would exceed $15 million.

Francisco Goya is one of the first masters of fine art of the Romantic era. His work is characterized by a variety of genres: portraits, still lifes, paintings on historical and religious themes. Goya is the author of a series of murals called “Gloomy Paintings”. The largest collection of the artist’s works is kept in the Prado Museum in Madrid.

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