The sixteen-year-old Prince of Asturias wears the Spanish Habsburg Order of the Golden Fleece, the French Bourbon Order of the Holy Spirit, and the sash of the Spanish Order of Charles III. Once viewed as a copy, the picture is now considered the original, full-scale oil sketch for Goya’s famous group portrait of the family of King Charles IV (Museo del Prado, Madrid). Like the other surviving studies for that work, attention focused on the head while the bust and costume were left unfinished. Subsequently another artist gave it a finished appearance and painted the oval surround. The picture belonged the sitter’s widow and to the dukes of Montpensier.
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Title:Ferdinand VII (1784–1833), When Prince of Asturias
Artist:Goya (Spanish, Fuendetodos 1746–1828 Bordeaux) and Workshop
Medium:Oil on canvas
Dimensions:32 3/4 x 26 1/4 in. (83.2 x 66.7 cm)
Credit Line:Gift of René Fribourg, 1951
widow of the sitter, María Cristina de Borbón, Palacio Viejo del Real Sitio de Vista Alegre en Carabanchel, Madrid (by 1846–until 1858; inv., 1846, no. 342); Antoine-Marie-Philippe d'Orléans and the Infanta María Luisa Fernanda, duc and duchesse de Montpensier (1858–until his d. 1890; by 1860, housed at Palacio de San Telmo, Seville; inv., 1866, no. 64; inv., 1892, no. 5156); their daughter, princesse Marie Isabella Francesca d' Orléans, comtesse de Paris, Infanta of Spain, Palacio de San Telmo (from 1890); her son, Louis-Philippe-Robert d'Orléans, comte de Paris; duc Antoine de Montpensier, prince d'Orléans (until 1910; sold to Durand-Ruel); [Durand-Ruel, Paris, 1910; sold to Stillman]; James Stillman, Paris and New York (from 1910); his grandson, Avery Rockefeller, Greenwich, Conn. (until 1950; consigned to Knoedler, New York, 1950; consigned to Rosenberg & Stiebel, New York, 1950; sold to Rosenberg & Stiebel); [Rosenberg & Stiebel, New York, 1950; sold to Kleinberger]; [Kleinberger, New York, 1950; sold to Fribourg]; René Fribourg, New York (1950–51)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Goya: Drawings and Prints," May 4–30, 1955, no. 170.
Washington. National Portrait Gallery. "President Monroe's Message: An Exhibition Commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the Monroe Doctrine, 1823–1973," December 2, 1973–May 26, 1974, no. 35.
Corpus Christi, Tex. Art Museum of South Texas. "Spain and New Spain," February 15–April 30, 1979, no. 14 (as Workshop of Goya).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Goya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 12–December 31, 1995, unnumbered cat.
Huntington, N.Y. Heckscher Museum. "Goya to Vicente: Tradition and Response," September 8–December 16, 2001, no catalogue.
Charles Yriarte. "Sa biographie, les fresques, les toiles, les tapisseries, les eaux-fortes et le catalogue de l'oeuvre." Goya. Paris, 1867, p. 146, as no. 64 in the collection catalogue of the duc de Montpensier, Séville.
Cipriano Muñoz y Manzano, conde de la Viñaza. Goya, su tiempo, su vida, sus obras. Madrid, 1887, pp. 214, 217, no. 10, praises its modeling and color as "very noteworthy".
Zeferino Araujo Sánchez. Goya. Madrid, , p. 113, no. 195, calls it a study for the "Family of Charles IV," a companion to those studies at the Prado.
Paul Lafond. Goya. Paris, , p. 119, no. 30, as in the collection of the comtesse de Paris.
Richard Oertel. Francisco de Goya. Bielefeld, 1907, p. 105, pl. 88, dates it about 1803 and erroneously places it in the collection of Visconde Val de Erro, Madrid.
Albert F. Calvert. Goya, an Account of His Life and Works. London, 1908, p. 146, no. 3, as in the collection of the comtesse de Paris.
William Stirling-Maxwell Edward Hutton inStories of the Spanish Artists until Goya. London, 1910, p. 302, lists it among works at the Palazzo de S. Telmo, Seville.
N. Sentenach. "Retratistas de los Borbones." Boletín de la sociedad Española de excursiones 21 (June 1, 1913), p. 78, mentions it as one of four studies for the Prado "Family of Charles IV," formerly in the Palace of San Telmo, Seville.
A. de Beruete y Moret. Goya: Pintor de retratos. Madrid, 1916, p. 170, no. 45 [English ed., 1922, p. 204, no. 47], erroneously as still in the Palace of San Telmo, Seville.
August L. Mayer. Francisco de Goya. Munich, 1923, p. 182, no. 108 [English ed., 1924, p. 144, no. 108], dates it 1800 and erroneously locates it with the comtesse de Paris; lists another study of Ferdinand VII when Crown Prince, in a private collection, Brussels (no. 107).
Francisco Zapater y Gómez. Colección de cuatrocientas cuarenta y nueve reproducciones de cuadros, dibujos y aguafuertes de Don Francisco de Goya . . . publicadas por Don Francisco Zapater y Gómez en 1860. Madrid, 1924, pl. 31, as in San Telmo, Seville, in 1860.
Tomás G. Larraya. Goya: Su vida, sus obras. Barcelona, 1928, p. 177, erroneously as in a private collection, Madrid.
X. Desparmet Fitz-Gerald. L'oeuvre peint de Goya: Catalogue raisonné. Paris, 1928–50, vol. 2, pp. 119, 319, 330, no. 401, pl. 324, as dated 1800, in the Stillman collection, United States; calls it the second study for the Prado "Family of Charles IV" and erroneously notes that the painted oval frame was removed during restoration.
R. Gómez de la Serna. Goya. Madrid, , p. 264, erroneously as still in the Palace of San Telmo, Seville.
Xavier de Salas. Goya: La familia de Carlos IV. Barcelona, 1944, p. 31, does not believe that studies for the "Family of Charles IV" in collections outside the Prado are by Goya.
Martin S. Soria. Letter to Harry Sperling. March 29, 1950, calls it an excellent study and mentions the portrait of Queen María Luisa in the Taft Museum, Cincinnati, as a companion piece; observes that he has "always felt that the studies, most of which are now in the Prado, offer an even more incisive and biting character sketch than the finished picture, the famous 'Family of Charles IV'".
Josephine L. Allen and Elizabeth E. Gardner. A Concise Catalogue of the European Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1954, p. 43.
Valentín de Sambricio. "Los retratos de Carlos IV y María Luisa, por Goya." Archivo español de arte 30 (April-June 1957), p. 98, considers all of the "Family of Charles IV" formerly in the Montpensier collection copies after Goya.
Juan Antonio Gaya Nuño. La pintura española fuera de España. Madrid, 1958, p. 168, no. 982, as dated 1800 and erroneously as still in the Stillman collection; lists another version in a private collection, Brussels.
Gabriel Rouchès. La peinture espagnole des origines au XXe siècle. Paris, 1958, p. 417, finds greater spontaneity and youthful charm in our portrait than in Ferdinand VII's likeness in the Prado "Family of Charles IV".
Elizabeth du Gué Trapier. Goya and His Sitters: A Study of His Style as a Portraitist. New York, 1964, p. 21, considers only the five portrait studies in the Prado authentic; remarks that the other pictures "cannot compare in excellence with the studies in the Prado, and it seems probable that some of them were done by assistants after the completion of the large group".
Gaspar Gómez de la Serna. Goya y su España. Madrid, 1969, p. 282, lists it along with the Prado studies for the "Family of Charles IV".
Pierre Gassier and Juliet Wilson. Vie et oeuvre de Francisco Goya. Ed. François Lachenal. Fribourg, Switzerland, 1970, pp. 148–49, 167, 197, no. 791, ill. [English ed., 1971, pp. 149, 166–67, 197, no. 791, ill.], remark that there is no known study for Ferdinand VII's portrait in the "Family of Charles IV," but suggest ours is a copy of a lost original (citing Ref. Sambricio 1957), possibly by Esteve (citing Ref. Gudiol 1971); note that the painted oval "frames" were later additions to the four former Montpensier portraits, and that one was removed from the Taft Museum picture of Queen María Luisa.
José Gudiol. Goya 1746–1828: Biographie, analyse critique et catalogue des peintures. Paris, 1970, vol. 1, pp. 287–88, no. 441; vol. 3, fig. 712 [Spanish ed., 1969–70; English ed., 1971, vol. 1, pp. 293–94, no. 441; vol. 3, fig. 712], based on a photograph, considers it a copy by Esteve, perhaps with some intervention by Goya, with the face being the best part; does not find it closely related to Ferdinand VII's likeness in the Prado "Family of Charles IV"; elsewhere suggests that the four oval portraits from the Montpensier collection once belonged to a complete set of royal portraits, dated 1800, painted by Goya and another painter, perhaps Esteve.
Rita de Angelis. L'opera pittorica completa di Goya. Milan, 1974, p. 115, no. 386, dates it 1800 and calls it probably by Esteve; believes the four Montpensier pictures were probably not made after lost original sketches, but were done after the completion of the final group portrait.
Marcus B. Burke. Goya: Paintings from the Prado. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1976, fig. 12, dates it about 1800 and attributes it to Goya.
Marcus B. Burke inSpain and New Spain: Mexican Colonial Arts in their European Context. Exh. cat., Art Museum of South Texas. Corpus Christi, Tex., 1979, pp. 82, 84, no. 14, ill., as dated about 1800 and seeming to derive from a lost sketch for the Prado "Family of Charles IV"; attributes it possibly to Esteve or Goya's workshop; adds that it was "perhaps even supervised by Goya himself, since the painting is of some quality, has a history going back to the royal family, and would have had to be done by someone with access to Goya's original sketches".
Pierre Gassier. Goya: Témoin de son temps. Secaucus, 1983, p. 133, fig. 81 [French ed, 1983], remarks that it "differs extremely" from Ferdinand's likeness in the Prado "Family of Charles IV"; notes that it has been tentatively identified as a portrait painted by Esteve based on Goya's original study.
Alfonso E. Pérez Sánchez. Goya. Paris, 1989, p. 152, no. 21, ill., dates it 1800 and attributes it to Goya.
José Luis Morales y Marín. Goya: Catálogo de la pintura. Saragossa, 1994, pp. 270–71, under no. 316 [English ed., 1997], calls it a copy by [Agustín] Esteve after a lost original study; mentions another presumed sketch of Ferdinand VII in a private collection, Brussels as well as a painting once considered a study of Ferdinand, now in the Paul Hirsch collection, Frankfurt.
Susan Alyson Stein inGoya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1995, pp. 45, 61 n. 27, p. 68, fig. 38 (installation view), catalogues it as a "Copy after Goya," apparently based on one of Goya's studies for the Prado "Family of Charles IV"; considers the head more convincingly painted and the pose entirely reinterpreted; suggests it was commissioned from Goya's studio with his participation or under his supervision.
Nigel Glendinning. "Goya at the Metropolitan." Apollo 142 (December 1995), p. 66, considers it an authentic Goya that "still looks right".
Juliet Wilson-Bareau. Letter. October 23, 1995, comments that she and Manuela Mena Marqués believe it may be the "original (but overpainted) sketch for the 'Family of Charles IV,' for which the three most important sketches—of Charles IV, María Luisa and the Prince—are 'missing' from the Prado group".
Edward J. Sullivan inThe Taft Museum: European and American Paintings. New York, 1995, p. 224, fig. 2, calls it workshop of Goya and dates it about 1800; summarizes the critical reception of the four former Montpensier royal portraits and attributes the Taft Museum picture of the queen to an anonymous follower of Goya.
Katharine Baetjer. European Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art by Artists Born Before 1865: A Summary Catalogue. New York, 1995, p. 166, ill.
José Manuel Arnaiz. "Nuevas andanzas de Goya: Falsos y auténticos en el Metropolitan." Galería antiquaria no. 136 (February 1996), p. 42, calls it a copy that at first glance appears to date from the late 19th or early 20th century.
Jeannine Baticle. "Goya au Metropolitan." Connaissance des arts no. 527 (April 1996), p. 63, calls it a copy after Goya.
Juliet Wilson-Bareau. "Goya in The Metropolitan Museum of Art." Burlington Magazine 138 (February 1996), pp. 101–2, fig. 45, calls it a "Goya, reworked by another hand" and dates it about 1800–18; cites an entry in the 1814 inventory of the Palacio Real, Madrid for presumably lost studies of Ferdinand, Queen María Luisa, and the Infanta María Isabel, which documents the latter two portraits as being reworked into finished pictures; suggests the same may be true for the MMA portrait, noting that "since Goya's portrait studies are very lightly sketched, 'completion' would involve virtual obliteration of all but the original faces".
Manuela B. Mena Marqués et al. inGoya: La familia de Carlos IV. Ed. Manuela B. Mena Marqués. Madrid, 2002, pp. 242, 266 nn. 157, 158, note that an 1808 inventory of the Palacio Real lists seven studies for the "Family of Charles IV" and tentatively identify these as the five Prado portrait sketches plus two lost studies, probably finished later, of Charles IV and Prince Ferdinand; consider this picture a copy possibly by Esteve after the lost original and trace its provenance from María Cristina of Bourbon in 1846 to the dukes of Montpensier in 1866.
Ángel Rodríguez Rebollo. Las colecciones de pintura de los duques de Montpensier en Sevilla (1866–1892). Madrid, 2005, pp. 50, 223, remarks that the four small portraits of the royal family that once adorned the Galería Principal of the Palace of San Telmo, including our picture, were inherited by the Infanta Luisa Fernanda; erroneously cites Morales y Marín [see Ref. 1994] as attributing these works to Rafael Esteve and appears to confuse their status, referring to them as both copies and originals.
María Teresa Rodríguez Torres. Un Retrato de Palafox en "La Familia de Carlos IV". [Madrid], , pp. 30–31, 34, 36–37, 39, 196–99, 210–15, 218–27, 230–35, 237, 297–98, 308–9, figs. 138, 140 (color detail), 142 (color), 145 (cross-section detail), 148 (color detail), 150 (cross-section), 158 (x-radiograph), 162–64, 168 (color details), attributes it to Goya, without workshop participation.
The Prince of Asturias was sixteen when Goya painted his sketch for the Family of Charles IV (1800; Prado, Madrid). He is shown wearing the Spanish Habsburg Order of the Golden Fleece, the French Bourbon Order of the Holy Spirit, and the sash of the Spanish Order of Charles III.
Once viewed as a copy, this picture is now considered the original full-scale oil sketch for the large group portrait, later transformed into a finished painting by another hand. From Goya's account (see Cipriano Muñoz y Manzano, Conde de la Viñaza, Goya, su tiempo, su vida, sus obras, Madrid, 1887, p. 215) and from a June 9, 1800, letter from Queen María Luisa, we know that he made ten studies for the principal figures at Aranjuez, the summer residence of the royal family. An 1808 inventory of the Royal Palace mentions seven studies without identifying them individually, and an 1814 inventory identifies nine studies, including one of Ferdinand VII (see José Luis Sanco, "Francisco de Goya y Fréderic Quilliet en el Palacio Real de Madrid, 1808," Boletin del Museo del Prado 19 , p. 120; and Mena Marqués et. al. 2002, pp. 195, 240]. Five of the original studies are, without doubt, those now in the Prado. Four others, including this one, were at one time in the collection of the dukes of Montpensier, Palace of San Telmo, Seville, before being scattered among various collections. The other three former Montpensier portraits are of King Charles IV (private collection, Paris), Queen María Luisa (Taft Museum, Cincinnati) and the Infanta María Isabel (private collection, Paris).
Another portrait sketch of Ferdinand VII as Prince of Asturias (52 x 39 cm) was published in a 1988 catalogue of Stair Sainty Matthiesen Gallery, New York, as sold to a private collector. A version in a private collection, Brussels, is mentioned in the literature, but not illustrated (see Mayer 1923, no. 107; Gaya Nuño 1958, no. 983; Morales y Marin 1994, p. 271).
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