Goya treated the theme of bullfighting in a number of paintings, in a celebrated series of prints—the Tauromaquia, published in 1816—and in four lithographs published in Bordeaux in 1825 when he was in exile. During the mid-nineteenth century there was a brisk business in copies of Goya's popular bullfight compositions, and the use here of certain motifs that appear in Goya's other bullfight scenes has led some authorities to view our painting as a pastiche by another hand. The richness of the composition however, and the brilliant handling of the foreground crowd are worthy of Goya himself.
Javier Goya, Madrid ("vente de Goya," location and date unknown); José de Salamanca y Mayol, Marqués de Salamanca, Madrid and Paris (by 1867–75; his sale, Paris, June 3–6, 1867, no. 178, as a pendant to "Procession in Valencia" no. 179, for Fr 3,600, bought in; his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, January 25–26, 1875, no. 13, for Fr 7,500 to Dreyfus); Auguste Dreyfus, Paris (1875–89; his sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, May 29, 1889, no. 103, for Fr. 6,100); Dreyfus de Gonzalez, [Paris?] (until 1896; his sale, as "collection de M. D[reyfus] de G[onzalez]," Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, June 8, 1896, no. 2, for Fr. 4,100 to Veil Picard); Arthur Veil Picard, Paris (from 1896); [Wildenstein, Paris and New York (by 1910; for $24,000 to Leonard Thomas)]; Leonard Thomas, New York (by 1911–22; sold through Mrs. Albert Sterner to MMA)
New York. Gimpel & Wildenstein. "Goya, del Mazo, El Greco," March 1911, no catalogue.
New York. Gimpel & Wildenstein. "El Greco, Goya, Lucas," February–March 1, 1913, no catalogue.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Francisco Goya: His Paintings, Drawings and Prints," January 27–March 8, 1936, no. 15.
San Francisco. California Palace of the Legion of Honor. "Exhibition of Paintings, Drawings, and Prints by Francisco Goya (1746–1828)," June 5–July 4, 1937, no. 25.
Art Institute of Chicago. "The Art of Goya: Paintings, Drawings, and Prints," January 30–March 2, 1941, no. 79.
Minneapolis. Walker Art Center. "Goya," October 12–November 23, 1952, no catalogue.
Richmond. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. "Goya: Paintings, Prints, and Drawings," January 16–March 1, 1953, not in catalogue.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Goya: Drawings and Prints," May 4–30, 1955, no. 186.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "Masterpieces of Painting in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 16–November 1, 1970, unnumbered cat. (p. 60).
Leningrad [St. Petersburg]. State Hermitage Museum. "100 Paintings from the Metropolitan Museum," May 22–July 27, 1975, no. 37.
Moscow. State Pushkin Museum. "100 Paintings from the Metropolitan Museum," August 28–November 2, 1975, no. 37.
Madrid. Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando. "Goya: Toros y toreros," June 15–July 29, 1990, no. 12.
Athens. National Gallery Alexandros Soutzos Museum. "From El Greco to Cézanne: Masterpieces of European Painting from the National Gallery of Art, Washington, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," December 13, 1992–April 11, 1993, no. 35.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Goya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 12–December 31, 1995, unnumbered cat. (as Style of Goya).
Paris. Musée d'Orsay. "Manet/Velázquez: La manière espagnole au XIXe siècle," September 16, 2002–January 12, 2003, no. 21 (as Imitateur de Goya, after 1828?).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Manet/Velázquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting," March 4–June 8, 2003, no. 15 (as Style of Goya, after 1828?).
Paul Lafond. "Goya. VII: Goya Graveur." Revue de l'art ancien et moderne 9 (March 1901), p. 220, ill. (etching), reproduces, without attribution, Daniel Mordant's etching after this painting.
Paul Lafond. Goya. Paris, , pp. 80, 107, no. 27, mentions "la 'Course de Taureaux' en deux parties, de la vente Salamanca de 1875" and gives the sale price of 7500 francs; notes that the painting was engraved by D. Mordant.
Valerian von Loga. Francisco de Goya. Berlin, 1903, p. 218, no. 538 [2nd ed., 1921], lists it in the "Vente Salamanca, Paris 1864 [sic, for 1867?], no. 178".
Albert F. Calvert. Goya, an Account of His Life and Works. London, 1908, p. 161, no. 142.
"News and Notes of the Art World." New York Times (March 12, 1911), p. SM15.
"Kendall's Paintings Shown: Also Works by El Greco and Goya—Ancient Stained-Glass Exhibit." New York Times (February 21, 1913), p. 4, compares the bullfight paintings of Goya and Eugenio Lucas.
Hugh Stokes. Francisco Goya: A Study of the Work and Personality of the Eighteenth Century Spanish Painter and Satirist. London, 1914, p. 352, no. 533.
August L. Mayer. Francisco de Goya. Munich, 1923, pp. 44, 215, no. 659, includes this picture in the sales of Salamanca (1864 [sic for 1867?]) and 1873 [for 1875?], Dreyfus (1889), and [Dreyfus de Gonzalez] (1896).
B[ryson]. B[urroughs]. "A Bull Fight by Goya." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 18 (March 1923), pp. 64–66, ill., considers it a late work; mentions analogies to "Bullfight in a Village" (Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid) and relates the depiction of a double ring to one of a series of four lithographs called "Les Taureaux de Bourdeaux" [see Notes]; states that the composition's lack of a single focal point shows a stylistic revolution from 18th century practice and points toward the style of the latter half of the 19th century.
August L. Mayer. Francisco de Goya. London, 1924, pp. 34, 60–61, 181, no. 659, dates it about 1810, somewhat later than the Madrid "Bullfight in a Village"; calls it "evidently unfinished" and relates it stylistically to "Majas on the Balcony" [now MMA 29.100.10].
M. Jiménez Catalán. "Conferencia pronunciada en el Centro Mercantil, Industrial y Agrícola de Zaragoza el día 30 de Octubre de 1926." Goya como pintor, grabador y litógrafo de asuntos taurinos. Saragossa, 1927, p. 12, dates it about 1810 and includes it in the 1864 [sic, for 1867?] Salamanca sale.
Tomás G. Larraya. Goya: Su vida, sus obras. Barcelona, 1928, p. 193.
X. Desparmet Fitz-Gerald. L'oeuvre peint de Goya: Catalogue raisonné. Paris, 1928–50, vol. 1, p. 269, no. 244, pl. 195; vol. 2, pp. 261, 264, 266–68, 307, 331, dates it 1814.
Alfred M. Frankfurter. "An American Appreciation of Goya." Antiquarian 16 (March 1931), p. 72, ill. p. 74, mentions another "version of the bullfight scene" in the collection of Arthur Sachs, New York [now National Gallery, Washington, as by Eugenio Lucas Villamil].
August L. Mayer. "Anotaciones a cuadros de Velázquez, Zurbarán, Murillo y Goya, en el Prado y en la Academia de San Fernando." Boletín de la Sociedad Española de Excursiones 44 (1936), p. 45, mentions two paintings in a Parisian collection attributed to Goya but probably French, dating from 1850–60 and freely copied after our painting and the Corrida in the Academia ["Bullfight in a Village," Madrid].
Harry B. Wehle. The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Catalogue of Italian, Spanish, and Byzantine Paintings. New York, 1940, p. 251, ill. p. 250, dates it 1810–20, well before the series of lithographs called "Bullfights of Bordeaux" of ca. 1825, made during Goya's voluntary exile in France; observes that "its treatment closely resembles that of the Bullfight of uncertain date in the Academia de San Fernando" .
Elizabeth du Gué Trapier. Eugenio Lucas y Padilla. New York, 1940, p. 6, finds it strange that Eugenio Lucas y Padilla, in painting his bullfight in a divided ring [Ortiz Cañavate collection, Madrid], did not follow our Goya, which he must have seen while working in the Salamanca Palace in Madrid.
José Gudiol. Goya. New York, 1941, p. 62, ill. pp. 108–9, 111 (overall and color details), calls it "similar to a colored design, with the quality of a watercolor".
Daniel Catton Rich. The Art of Goya: Paintings, Drawings and Prints. Exh. cat., Art Institute of Chicago. Chicago, 1941, p. 52, no. 79, ill., considers it unfinished and describes it as "a triumph of impressionist seeing".
Harold E. Wethey. "The Goya Exhibition." Art in America 29 (April 1941), p. 99.
Regina Shoolman and Charles E. Slatkin. The Enjoyment of Art in America. Philadelphia, 1942, p. 473, call the bullfight painting in the Toledo Museum inferior to ours.
Francisco Pompey. Goya: Su vida y sus obras. Madrid, 1945, p. 192, remarks that this painting foreshadows the final bullfighting series of Bordeaux.
F.J. Sánchez Cantón. "Como vivía Goya." Archivo español de arte 19 (April–June 1946), p. 89, publishes the 1812 inventory of Goya's possessions, drawn-up after the death of his wife, Josefa Bayeu; states that among the six works in the Salamanca sale (Paris 1867) with the designation "provient de la vente de Goya," only this painting and the "Procession in Valencia" (Fondation Bührle, Zurich) can credibly be among those listed in the 1812 inventory.
José María de Cossío. Los toros. Madrid, 1947, vol. 2, pp. 760–61, ill., dates it about 1810.
Henry S. Francis. "Bulls of Bordeaux by Goya." Bulletin of the Cleveland Museum of Art 36 (December 1949), p. 194, dates it 1810; discusses the painting in relation to the Cleveland Museum's lithograph "Bullfight in a Divided Ring," from the "Bulls of Bordeaux" series.
Theodore Rousseau Jr. The Metropolitan, New York. New York, 1957, p. 46, ill.
A. Hyatt Mayor. "The Gifts that Made the Museum." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 16 (November 1957), p. 86, calls it "Goya's 'Bullfight'".
Juan Antonio Gaya Nuño. La pintura española fuera de España. Madrid, 1958, pp. 175–76, no. 1065, dates it perhaps 1810–14.
J. Mathey. Graphisme de Manet: Essai de catalogue raisonné des dessins. Vol. 1, Paris, 1961, p. 28, under no. 61, comments that a Manet drawing of a bullfighter (Private collection, Geneva) was copied after this painting.
José Gudiol. Goya. New York, 1965, pp. 41–42, fig. 43 (detail), dates it about 1819.
Claus Virch. Francisco Goya. New York, 1967, pp. 44–45, no. 16, ill., dates it about 1810; remarks that the sketchy brushwork has led many to call the work unfinished.
Xavier de Salas. "Precisiones sobre pinturas de Goya: "El entierro de la sardina", la serie de obras de gabinete de 1783–1784 y otras notas." Archivo español de arte 41 (January–March 1968), pp. 10–11, identifies the "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle), with its X1 mark (the "X" indicating Xavier, Goya's son), as one of the "quatro quadros iguales con el. no. primero" in the first entry of the 1812 inventory [see Ref. Sánchez Cantón 1946]; further notes that in the two Salamanca sale catalogues, this painting and the "Procession" are listed with the same dimensions; observes that any picture identified in the 1812 inventory must necessarily be dated before that year
Gaspar Gómez de la Serna. Goya y su España. Madrid, 1969, pp. 194, 286, dates it before 1812.
Calvin Tomkins. Merchants and Masterpieces: The Story of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1970, p. 72 [rev., enl. ed., 1989].
Edith A. Standen inMasterpieces of Painting in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. New York, , p. 60, ill. (color).
Pierre Gassier and Juliet Wilson. Vie et oeuvre de Francisco Goya. Ed. François Lachenal. Fribourg, Switzerland, 1970, pp. 251, 255–56, 265, 381–82, no. 953, ill. [English ed., 1971], date it 1810–12; identify it as one of the four pictures listed in the first entry of the 1812 inventory, along with "The Greasy Pole" (former Duque de Tamames, Madrid), "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle, Zurich), which they note is this work's "pendant", and "Carnival" (Bousquet collection, Paris); further suggest that our picture was cited in the 1828 inventory of Goya's paintings compiled by the painter Antonio Brugada after Goya's death, as no. 30 "Dos corridas de toros, cuadro"; note that a work should technically not appear on both inventory lists since those listed in 1812 would already belong to the son, and no longer be part of Goya's estate in 1828.
José Gudiol. Goya 1746–1828: Biographie, analyse critique et catalogue des peintures. Paris, 1970, vol. 1, pp. 157, 319–20, 403, no. 615; vol. 4, figs. 973, 974 [Spanish ed., 1969–70; English ed., 1971, vol. 1, pp. 159, 326–27, 411, no. 615; vol. 4, figs. 973, 974 (detail)], dates it about 1810–12; proposes that this work—along with the other three listed in Ref. Gassier and Wilson 1971— is one of the four paintings listed in the first entry of the 1812 inventory and notes that all four are executed "with a rather lavish use of the cane spatula".
Eric Young. "Gudiol's Goya." Burlington Magazine 115 (January 1973), p. 45, accepts the identification of this picture as one of the "four equal paintings" in the first entry of the 1812 inventory.
Rita de Angelis. L'opera pittorica completa di Goya. Milan, 1974, pp. 86, 125, 127, no. 535, ill., identifies it as no. 30 in the 1828 Brugada inventory.
Marcus B. Burke in100 Paintings from the Metropolitan Museum [in Russian]. Exh. cat., State Hermitage Museum, Leningrad. Moscow, 1975, pp. 107–8, no. 37, ill.
Nigel Glendinning. Goya and His Critics. New Haven, 1977, p. 321 n. 15, comments that doubts have been expressed about the authenticity of this painting, as well as that of "The Bullfight" in the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Howard Hibbard. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1980, pp. 394, 396–97, figs. 713, 717 (color detail).
José Camón Aznar. Fran. de Goya. Vol. 3, Saragossa, 1981, p. 175, states that the articulation of space in the picture supports an attribution to Goya.
José Camón Aznar. Fran. de Goya. Vol. 4, Saragossa, 1982, ill. p. 80 (color).
Ricardo Ramón Jarne inGoya, 1746–1828. Exh. cat.Milan, 1989, p. 235, discusses it in the context of the 1825 Bordeaux bullfight lithographs.
Pierre Gassier inGoya: Toros y toreros. Exh. cat., Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando. Madrid, 1990, pp. 13, 19, 25–26, 31, 47, 72–74, 149, no. 12, ill. (color) [French ed. Arles, 1990; exhibited in Madrid only], dates it about 1812; calls it the most important example of Goya's work in this genre; notes that it may correspond to the entry in the 1828 inventory, although its pendant from the Salamanca sale, "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle) appeared in the 1812 inventory; comments on stylistic similarities with the latter painting, particularly in the relationship between landscape and figures.
Janis A. Tomlinson inThe Passionate Eye: Impressionist and Other Master Paintings from the Collection of Emil G. Bührle, Zurich. Exh. cat., National Gallery of Art, Washington. Zürich, 1990, pp. 64, 230 n. 2 under no. 11, fig. 11a, notes that although it was listed as the pendant to "Procession in Valencia" (Fondation Bührle) in the 1867 Salamanca sale catalogue, the "Procession" sold for 1,100 francs less, "perhaps due to the popularity of the bullfight theme in mid-nineteenth century France".
Alvaro Martínez-Novillo inGoya: Toros y toreros. Exh. cat., Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando. Madrid, 1990, p. 31, dates it 1810–12; refers to this painting and the Madrid "Bullfight in a Village" as the most personal of Goya's representations of the bullfight; observes that the theme of a bullfight in a village would be developed later by Eugenio Lucas Velázquez.
José Luis Morales y Marín. Goya: Catálogo de la pintura. Saragossa, 1994, pp. 101–2, 316–17, 335, no. 430, ill., dates it about 1812–13; states that it appears to be included in the 1828 inventory; notes that it and the "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle) were in the Salamanca collection, acquired from Goya's grandson, Mariano de Goya, and that the same collection included a replica or copy of this painting.
Susan Alyson Stein inGoya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1995, pp. 39, 43–44, 46, 54, 58, 61 n. 40, 62 n. 52, 68, figs. 26 (color), 38 (installation view), as Style of Goya, Spanish, early 19th century; notes that its purchase by Burroughs for the MMA was precipitated by the Museum's 1921 exhibition "Bullfight Prints by Goya" and that Burroughs prized its unprecedented realism, going so far as to hang it in a gallery of modern European painting; describes it as an imitation of the Madrid "Bullfight in a Village" and asserts that "most scholars consider the execution of the Museum's 'Bullfight' so weak as to preclude the possibility of its being authentic"; notes that evidence suggests it was included in the 1812 and 1828 inventories but notes that these documents' "relevance to questions of authenticity" are being re-evaluated; observes that Salamanca owned copies after Goya's works, including those by Eugenio Lucas y Padilla, who specialized in Goyaesque bullfights.
Nigel Glendinning. "Book Reviews." Apollo 141 (March 1995), p. 66, registers surprise that Morales [Ref. 1994] considers this painting authentic despite its recent declassification by the MMA, "with the assent of many experts".
Manuela Mena Marqués. "The Metropolitan's 'Bullfight' and Other Related Paintings by Goya." Goya in the Museum's Collection: Controversies and Insights. October 20, 1995, considers it a copy after Goya and dates it to the mid-1830s; observes similarities with the smaller Madrid "Bullfight in a Village" and states that our picture uses the same technique of Goya's small cabinet pictures "in a very suspicious way"; notes that it "mixes up with pastiche-like combinations" elements from the "Tauromaquia" etchings, from which it also derives; rejects an attribution to Eugenio Lucas whose "Bullfight" in the March collection, Madrid is "already in the aesthetic of the 19th century".
Eleanor Sayre. "One Connoisseur's View of Goya." Goya in the Museum's Collection: Controversies and Insights. October 20, 1995, ascribes it to an imitator of Goya; compares it to a Goya lithograph of the same subject and remarks that it lacks focus and the power to "force our attention towards what is important to Goya—two encounters between courageous men and brave bulls".
Gary Tinterow. "The Metropolitan's 'Majas,' not by Goya." Goya in the Museum's Collection: Controversies and Insights. October 20, 1995, finds it lacking in focus and comments on "the dispersed nature of the composition".
José Manuel Arnaiz. "Nuevas andanzas de Goya: Falsos y auténticos en el Metropolitan." Galería antiquaria no. 136 (February 1996), p. 42, ill. p. 45 (color), calls it "clearly and decidedly the product of another hand"; suggests that further doubt is cast by its presence in the "strange" second Salamanca sale of 1875, where it was said to have come from a non-existent "Goya sale".
Juliet Wilson-Bareau. "Goya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art." Burlington Magazine 138 (February 1996), pp. 100–101, rejects attribution of this painting to Goya and suggests it was made by the artist responsible for "Majas on a Balcony" (MMA 29.100.10); reiterates the theory that following his father's death, Javier Goya substituted copies after the original "four works of equal size" were sold [see Wilson-Bareau 1996, Metropolitan Museum Journal].
Francisco Calvo Serraller inEugenio Lucas Velázquez en la Habana. Exh. cat.Madrid, 1996, pp. 53–54, ill. (color), as "attributed to Goya"; notes that Goya was the inspiration for Eugenio Lucas Velázquez's "La Plaza Partida" (Museo Nacional, Havana), painted in 1853.
Janis A. Tomlinson. "Evolving Concepts: Spain, Painting, and Authentic Goyas in Nineteenth-Century France." Metropolitan Museum Journal 31 (1996), pp. 196–98, fig. 6, comments that the attributions for this painting and the "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle) have been challenged or denied; discusses criteria in 19th century France that explain the paintings' acceptance as authentic when in the Salamanca collection.
Juliet Wilson-Bareau. "Goya and the X Numbers: The 1812 Inventory and Early Acquisitions of "Goya" Pictures." Metropolitan Museum Journal 31 (1996), pp. 163–64, 166, 168–69, fig. 11, calls it "style of Goya"; discusses recent doubt about the authenticity of paintings identified in both the 1812 and 1828 inventories and casts doubt on the reliability of the 1828 inventory itself; suggests that Javier Goya substituted paintings with 1812 inventory marks after the original works were sold and that he and his son, Mariano, introduced copies into the Goya canon by extolling stylistic traits characteristic of these falsifications, such as the excessive use of the palette knife, as seen in this painting.
María Teresa Rodríguez Torres. "Economía de guerra en Goya. Cuadros pintados con cañas." Goya 250 años después, 1746–1996: Congreso internacional. Marbella, 1996, pp. 139–40, 147 n. 29, figs. 5 (x-ray detail), after examining the MMA paintings "Majas on the Balcony," "Bullfight in a Divided Arena," and "City on a Rock," concludes that all three are authentic Goyas; states that this painting is one of several that Goya made during the Spanish War of Independence when materials were in short supply and he repainted old canvases using knives, spatulas, and cane reeds instead of brushes.
Manuela Mena Marqués inGoya: Un regard libre. Exh. cat., Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille. Paris, 1998, pp. 31, 37 n. 6, observes that Javier and Mariano Goya had immediate access to Goya's works, allowing such exact copies of the paintings to be made that it is difficult to discern unless a copy is examined alongside an original; such is the case with this painting when compared with the Madrid "Bullfight in a Village".
Alvaro Martínez-Novillo inGoya, hommages. Les années bordelaises, 1824–1828: Présence de Goya aux XIXe et XXe siècles. Exh. cat., Galerie des Beaux-Arts. Bordeaux, 1998, pp. 129–30, fig. 11, states that the reattribution of this picture was a bit hasty, since it is a magnificent painting.
Juliet Wilson-Bareau in Gary Tinterow and Geneviève Lacambre. Manet/Velázquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting. Exh. cat., Musée d'Orsay, Paris. New York, 2003, pp. 157, 419, no. 15, fig. 5.34 (color) [French ed., "Manet/Velázquez: La manière espagnole au XIXe siècle," Paris, 2002, pp. 134, 341–42, no. 21, fig. 72 (color)], as Style of Goya (Eugenio Lucas Velázquez?) and dated "after 1828(?)"; calls it a pastiche based on the Madrid "Bullfight in a Village"; quotes Théophile Silvestre's 1867 denigration of the Goyas owned by Salamanca; speculates that the questionable works from the 1812 inventory were sanctioned either by Goya or Javier and observes that by the mid-19th century many fakes and pastiches were attributed to Goya.
Juliet Wilson-Bareau inGoya en tiempos de guerra. Ed. Manuela B. Mena Marqués. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado. Madrid, 2008, pp. 47, 49, fig. 15 (color), erroneously asserts that the picture is presently called "Style of Goya" by the Museum; notes that the phrase "Vente de Goya" [annotation in the 1875 Salamanca sale cat.; see ex. colls.] seems to have been used by Mariano Goya to "guarantee" the authenticity of works sold after the death of his father, Javier; illustrates it as "Style of Goya," of unknown date, between 1812 and 1867.
The MMA's "Bullfight in a Divided Ring" was long considered one of the "four pictures of equal size" from the first entry of the inventory of paintings drawn-up following the death of the painter's wife, Josefa Bayeu, in 1812, all of which became the property of Goya's son, Javier (first published in Ref. Sánchez Cantón 1946). However, this picture, which is now considered to be a pastiche, is probably not one of the original four listed in the inventory, and is indeed no longer considered an autograph work.
The "Procession in Valencia" (Foundation Bührle, Zurich), which is listed as the pendant to our picture in the 1867 and 1875 Salamanca sale catalogues, bears an inventory mark "X 1" while our picture lacks the mark (x-ray, January 15, 1973). Salas ("Sur les tableaux de Goya qui appartinrent à son fils," Gazette des beaux-arts, vol. 63, February 1964) proposed that Goya's son added the mark to indicate the pictures in the artist's studio which belonged to him. The "X" referred to his initial as he then spelled his name "Xavier," though the mark was subsequently removed from a number of paintings. The other two paintings which have been identified with the first entry are "The Greasy Pole" (or "The Maypole") (formerly Duque de Tamanes, Madrid, present location unknown), which is also marked "X 1," and "Carnival" (Bousquet collection, Paris), which is not. Recent scholarship has cast doubt on the authenticity of the paintings bearing this inventory mark (see Refs. Wilson-Bareau 1996 and 2003).
The MMA's "Bullfight" relates to a number of Goya's paintings and prints which may have served as its sources. These include "Bullfight in a Village" (Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid; Gassier and Wilson 1971, no. 969; Gudiol 1971, no. 465), "The Divided Ring" (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; Gassier and Wilson 1971, no. 1675; Gudiol 1971, no. 759), and the lithograph "Bullfight in a Divided Ring" (Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid; Gassier and Wilson 1971, no. 1710; Gudiol 1971, fig. 1263). The print is one of a series of bullfight lithographs known as "Les Taureaux de Bordeaux." The exhibition "Goya: Toros y toreros," Arles and Madrid, 1990 (see Ref. Gassier 1990), discusses more fully Goya's treatment of the theme in various media.
An etching by Daniel Mordant after this work appeared in the 1889 sale catalogue of the Dreyfus collection, and was reproduced without attribution in Ref. Lafond 1901.