Israel Museum


I always visit the Israel Museum in Jerusalem and always find amazing things to see.  I will have three blog posts on this one excursion because it was quite amazing this time.  There are always so many contradictions here in Israel, especially in Jerusalem, and a day at the museum is no exception.  Their special exhibit was works by Francisco Goya in honor of his 270th birthday and lent by the Prado Museum in Madrid.  The cultural exchange between Spain and Israel only began 30 years ago.

The first series of exquisite prints are from the series called Caprichos.  They describe imagery that is part of the “scenery” basically people who usually go unnoticed.  In Goya’s hands he placed the figures in the center and turned frivolous images into somewhat sinister ones.  The next two are perfect examples of how much Goya was influenced by and admired his predecessor Velasquez. The next series which was considered so radical and dangerous that it was not published until after his death is titled “The Disasters of War”.  It depicts the atrocities of war, mostly the invasion by Napoleon that is also depicted in his large scale paintings of May 3, 1808 and then the rest are of the resulting famine from 1811-1812.    There is quite a bit of allegory in these prints.  A technique unfamiliar to me shown here is called roulette.  It’s a special toothed tool used in aquatint to create a dark tone.

It was great to see two of Goya’s most famous paintings (from the Prado) that were created as cartoons for tapestries.  Cartoons are full scale drawings or paintings that are then used as templates of sorts for the weavers.  They depict a very different scene from the prints.  The prints following them are of bullfighting, again influenced by Velasquez and in turn influencing artists like Degas with the diagonals and asymmetrical poles.  Check out Degas’ paintings of jockeys to see what I mean. The final prints done just before his death are from a series called “Les Disparates”

 

The museum was crowded not only because it was a rainy day but because Sunday is cultural day for soldiers. Any Sunday you will find soldiers at many of these places. Can you think of any other army that encourages its troops to go to a museum?
The museum was crowded not only because it was a rainy day but because Sunday is cultural day for soldiers. Any Sunday you will find soldiers at many of these places. Can you think of any other army that encourages its troops to go to a museum?
This group of school children were with an Arabic speaking docent. The museum has a very active childrens program and I was so glad to see these kids learning about what is their heritage too. I thought seeing them in front of the rainbow Agam painting was quite fitting.
This group of school children were with an Arabic speaking docent. The museum has a very active childrens program and I was so glad to see these kids learning about what is their heritage too. I thought seeing them in front of the rainbow Agam painting was quite fitting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the Byzantine gallery there are two reconstructions. This one is a synagogue from the 4th century.
In the Byzantine gallery there are two reconstructions. This one is a synagogue from the 4th century.
Across from the 4th century synagogue is a 5th century church reconstructed from 17 different churches. Notice the similarity of structure between the two worship spaces.
Across from the 4th century synagogue is a 5th century church reconstructed from 17 different churches. Notice the similarity of structure between the two worship spaces.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goya, "Can't Anyone Untie Us", 1799, etching: A man and a woman tied together with ropes, struggling o get loose and crying out to be untied quickly? Either I am mistaken or they are two people who have been forced to marry."
Goya, “Can’t Anyone Untie Us”, 1799, etching: “A man and a woman tied together with ropes, struggling to get loose and crying out to be untied quickly? Either I am mistaken or they are two people who have been forced to marry.”
Goya, "The Filiation", etching and aquatint, 1799: "Here is a question of fooling the finance by letting him see, through her pedigree, who were the parents, grandparents, of the young lady. And who is she? He will find that out later."
Goya, “The Filiation”, etching and aquatint, 1799: “Here is a question of fooling the fiance by letting him see, through her pedigree, who were the parents, grandparents, of the young lady. And who is she? He will find that out later.”
Goya, The Shamefaced One, etching and aquatint, 1799: "There are men whose faces are the most indecent parts of their whole bodies and it would be a good thing if those who have such unfortunate and ridiculous faces were to put them in their breeches."
Goya,” The Shamefaced One,” etching and aquatint, 1799: “There are men whose faces are the most indecent parts of their whole bodies and it would be a good thing if those who have such unfortunate and ridiculous faces were to put them in their breeches.”
Goya, "They are Hot", etching and burnished aquatint, 1799: "They are in such a hurry to gobble it down that they swallow it boiling hot. Even in pleasure, temperance and moderation are necessary."
Goya, “They are Hot”, etching and burnished aquatint, 1799: “They are in such a hurry to gobble it down that they swallow it boiling hot. Even in pleasure, temperance and moderation are necessary.”
Goya, "Two of a Kind", etching, aquatint, and drypoint, 1799: "It is often disputed whether men are worse than women or the contrary but the vices of the one and the other come from bad upbringing."
Goya, “Two of a Kind”, etching, aquatint, and drypoint, 1799: “It is often disputed whether men are worse than women or the contrary but the vices of the one and the other come from bad upbringing.”
Goya, "A Bad Night", etching and burnished aquatint, 1799: "Gadabout girls who don't want to stay at home, risk exposing themselves to these hardships."
Goya, “A Bad Night”, etching and burnished aquatint, 1799: “Gadabout girls who don’t want to stay at home, risk exposing themselves to these hardships.”
Goya (after Velasquez), "The Dwarf Sebastian Morra", 1778, etching
Goya (after Velasquez), “The Dwarf Sebastian Morra”, 1778, etching
Goya (after Velasquez), "Las Medians", red chalk and pencil, 1779
Goya (after Velasquez), “Las Meninas”, red chalk and pencil, 1779
Goya, "One Can't Look", etching, roulette, and aquatint, 1810
Goya, “One Can’t Look”, etching, roulette, and aquatint, 1810-1815
Goya, "What Courage!", etching, aquatint, and drypoint, 1810-15
Goya, “What Courage!”, etching, aquatint, and drypoint, 1810-15
Goya, "Sad Forebodings of What is Going to Happen", etching and drypoint, 1810-15
Goya, “Sad Forebodings of What is Going to Happen”, etching and drypoint, 1810-15
Goya, "The Straw Manikin,", oil on canvas, 1791-92,
Goya, “The Straw Manikin,”, oil on canvas, 1791-92, 100″ X 70″
Goya "The Parasol", oil on canvas, 1777, 59 X 40"
Goya “The Parasol”, oil on canvas, 1777, 59 X 40″
Goya, "The Old Comprador Spearing Another Bull", etching, burnished aquatint, and burin, 1816
Goya, “The Old Campeador Spearing Another Bull”, etching, burnished aquatint, and burin, 1816
Goya, " A Way of Flying", etching and aquatint, 1816-23
Goya, ” A Way of Flying”, etching and aquatint, 1816-23
Goya, "Punctual Folly," etching and aquatint, 1816-23
Goya, “Punctual Folly,” etching and aquatint, 1816-23
Goya, "Bon Voyage": "Where is this internal company going, filling the air with noise in the darkness of the night? If it were daytime it would be quite a different matter and gun shots would bring the whole group of them to the ground, but as it is night, no one can see them.", 1799, etching, burnished aquatint, and burin
Goya, “Bon Voyage”: “Where is this infernal company going, filling the air with noise in the darkness of the night? If it were daytime it would be quite a different matter and gun shots would bring the whole group of them to the ground, but as it is night, no one can see them.”, 1799, etching, burnished aquatint, and burin

 

 

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