Vicente Maria de Vera de Aragon, Duque de la Roca
Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes, 1746–1828
Gift of Anne R. and Amy Putnam, 1938.244
Francisco de Goya was an artist of remarkable talents, responsible for works ranging from altarpieces to nudes, from brutally realistic images of war to the visionary scenes of his print series. The most highly sought portraitist in Madrid, he served as the painter to the Spanish Court, where the Duque de la Roca was one of the leading men. He is shown in the uniform of the Royal Army and wears the blue and white band of the Order of Carlos III; the Order of Santiago on his left breast; and around his neck, the emblem of the Golden Fleece, the most distinguished of all Spanish chivalric orders. While there can be no question of the sitter’s importance, there is something chilling in his heavy-lidded gaze. Goya’s penetrating view of human psychology—fully evident in this masterpiece—has few equals in the history of portraiture.
View a discussion of Vicente Maria de Vera de Aragon, Duque de la Roca by Dr. John Marciari, former Curator of European Art and Head of Provenance Research.