In 1832 Eugene Delacroix (1798-1863) undertook a journey to Morocco, stopping along the way in the Spanish cities of Algeciras, Cadiz and Seville. 'All Goya was alive around me,' he wrote in a letter to his childhood friend Jean-Baptistc Pierret. Delacroix was one of the first people to have access, in France, to Goya's Los Caprichos.
The publication of Delacroix's Journal in 2009 has opened up a new and broader perspective on his life and work. Now is the ideal time for a major retrospective that presents the various stages of his production to the public in Spain and looks at how his work relates to Spanish art
Organised by "la Caixa" Foundation and the Louvre Museum, Eugene Delacroix (1798-1863) covers the artist's entire career and offers the most complete presentation of his work since a centenary exhibition organised by the Louvre in 1963. Curatedby Sebas-tien Allard, chief curator of the Louvre's Department of Paintings, the exhibition presents a broad view of Delacroix's career, featuring works drawn from major public and private collections held in Europe and America, from his beginnings, when he sought inspiration in artworks and literary texts, to the final stage, marked by Realism.
in the history of art, the exhibition offers visitors an opportunity to see works that have become an integral part of our visual culture, including Greece on the Ruins of Missolonghi, from the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts of Bordeaux, a sketch for The Death of Sardanapalus, and The Women of Algiers in Their Apartment (the latter works both from the Louvre Museum in Paris).
Delacroix tends to be associated with grand compositions depicting historical subjects, which convey a sense of drama, movement and colour, the work of a revolutionary artist confronting the conventions of Neoclassical art. Together with this familiar image, the exhibition proposes a new way of seeing the artist's work. Delacroix's writings reveal that he questioned how important the subject of a painting was: beyond the subject depicted, what a painting articulates are its plastic values and execution.
In line with this idea, the exhibition features a wide range of genres: from grand paintings inspired by historical events to religious works and paintings depicting animals, and from large-format paintings to watercolours and prints conceived as working documents, works that bear witness to the artist's inner life and point to something akin to contempo¬rary sensibility.