The Naked Maja, c.1800 (oil on canvas), Goya y Lucientes, Francisco Jose de (1746-1828) / Prado, Madrid, Spain / The Bridgeman Art Library
Francisco de Goya (1746 – 1828) was a brilliant Spanish artist who expressed his irreverent attitude toward life in his paintings and etchings. Spain’s leading painter by the 1780s, Goya was influenced by Velázquez and Rembrandt as well as by nature. As court painter, he painted numerous portraits of the Spanish royal family. A devastating illness in 1792 left Goya deaf and embittered, but also led to the creation of his nightmarish "Black Paintings." He is also celebrated for his “Los Caprichos,” a series of etchings that is a scathing commentary on his era.