In 1799, Francisco de Goya was made First Court Painter to King Charles IV of Spain. For the next ten years he painted numerous official portraits of the royal family, and many portraits of subjects of the court circle. In 1801, he painted Antonio Noriega de Bada y Bermúdez (National Gallery, Washington), the court treasurer and the husband of the sitter in this picture, who in that year was awarded the honorific membership in the Order of Carlos III. Five years later, the painter finished this portrait of Doña Francisca, in which he combines elements of delicate detail with great finesse—the embroidery of her silk dress, her sparkling tiara, and the dog’s outrageous collar—with an equally free, palpable brushwork. X-rays of portions of the composition, including her pose and the scampish pug, reveal final alterations made by Goya, causing some scholars to speculate that the portraits of husband and wife were originally intended as pendants. The ultimate simplicity of the composition and reduction of spatial depth give the subject a quiet and intimate character, despite her diffident aire.
- Artist Name: Francisco de Goya y Lucientes (Spanish, 1746-1828)
- Title: Doña Francisca Vicenta Chollet y Caballero
- Date: 1806
- Medium: Oil on canvas
- Dimensions: overall: 40 1/2 in x 31 7/8 in
- Credit Line: Norton Simon Art Foundation
- Accession Number: M.1981.7.P
- Copyright: © Norton Simon Art Foundation
Madame Camille Groult, by descent ca. 1918 to;
Groult heirs until ca. 1925;
[Gimpel and Wildenstein, 1925];
Harrison Williams, New York, by 1928 until his death in 1953, by inheritance to his wife;
Countess Bismarck (formerly Mona Harrison Williams), New York (1899-1983) (sale, London, Christie’s, 10 July 1981, lot 122);
Norton Simon Art Foundation.
Spanish Paintings from El Greco to Goya
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1928 to
Juliet Wilson-Bareau, Goya in the Norton Simon Museum, cat. 3 pp. 7, 14, 153, 158, 160 (ill.), 161-62, 161 (x-radiograph), 254, 285, 289
Gassier, Pierre; and Juliet Wilson, The Life and Complete Works of Francisco Goya with a Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings, Drawings, and Engravings, no. 853 p. 200
Angelis, R. de, L'opera pittorica completa di Goya, no. 450
Beruete y Moret, A. de, Goya as Portrait Painter, p. 125
Salas, Xavier de, Goya, no. 412
Mayer, August L., Francisco de Goya, no. 216
Masterpieces from the Norton Simon Museum, p. 107
Desparmet Fitzgerald, X., L'Oeuvre peint de Goya, no. 449
Brettell, Richard R. and Stephen F. Eisenman, Nineteenth-Century Art in the Norton Simon Museum, volume 1,
Sanchez Cantón, Francisco Javier, Vida y obras de Goya, no. 100 p. 80
Campbell, Sara, Collector Without Walls: Norton Simon and His Hunt for the Best, cat. 1684 p. 435
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