Mahi on the balcony, Francisco Goya

Mahi on the balcony, Francisco Goya
Mahi on the balcony, Francisco Goya - 1

  • Posted by Francisco de Goya
  • Museum: Metropolitan Museum
  • Year: 1805-1812

Overview of the painting :

Mahi on the balcony – Francisco Goya. 1805-1812. Oil on canvas. 194.9×125.7

   To the image of a fly, a girl from the thick of life, a typical Spanish woman, Francisco Goya (1746-1828), in whose painting realism and the tart taste of his fantasies were combined, returned more than once. In this picture, the artist depicted two young beauties in national costumes – the Mahi wore them as opposed to the French fashion adopted in the highest layers of Spanish society – and two mahos, their gentlemen.

   The girls’ outfits are painted in white, gold and mother-of-gray flowers, their faces are given in warm tones, and this thin, iridescent painting looks even more attractive against a dark background. The virgins sitting on the balcony, resembling birds in a cage, are a plot typical of a modern artist of Spanish life. But Goya made an alarming note in his interpretation, depicting in the background those dressed in dark men who are moving hats on their eyes and wrapped in raincoats. These figures are written almost silhouette, they merge with the dusk surrounding them and are perceived as shadows that guard lovely youth. But the mothers seem to be in a conspiracy with their guards – these seducers smile too conspiratorially, as if luring those whom their beauty will attract, in the darkness that swirls behind them. This picture, still full of light, already portends the complete tragedy later Goya’s work.