The Third of May 1808 Essay
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The museum I chose to look at was the Museo del Prado in Madrid, Spain. I did not physically go to this museum because it was across the world. I went on a virtual online tour of the museums website. This museum was very interesting to me because it had a lot of old paintings from the 16th, 17th, 18th centuries. The paintings and sculptures in this museum were mostly of human beings and their culture life-styles. I have never been to that museum or any art museum before in my life, so it was also very interesting to see the different types of art there was at the Museo del Prado.
If I physically went to the museum, I would have been blown out of my mind with all of the unique styles of art on display. The online pictures of the paintings do not look the same if you went to see it in person. The artwork I analyzed was created by Francisco De Goya in 1814.
The Third of May 1808, was the name of his masterpiece and he painted it on an oil canvas. I chose this painting because it is a painting that explains an event that happened during a war between two countries.
On my analysis of this painting, I discovered that this painting shows a variety of cultural representations of that time period. Museums have numerous items on display that represent many cultures and countries. Many art pieces have a story behind it that explains the past history of one’s culture. I would not risk my life to save the artwork that was created from my culture, unless the piece had a very valuable meaning to me personally. Our culture and society today is changing and there are millions of paintings being created. I also do not feel the need to risk my life for art. Goya created The Third of May 1808, because the painting shows the battle Spain had to go through to gain its freedom from Napoleon and his French Army (Totally History 1). Goya, being a Spanish man during this war, had witnessed and heard about the brutality of Napoleon decided to paint the harsh images of what was happening in his country. In the artwork, there are a handful of French soldiers pointing their weapons at unarmed citizens. Three men are dead and bleeding on the ground.
The people behind the dead men seem to be very afraid and appear to be of a different ethnicity then the armed men, based on their clothing, hair, and skin. Goya also showed how these Spanish men stood up for their country. In The painting, there seems to be a woman hold a child behind a group of men being shot at. The man standing up with his hands above his head, showing signs of surrender, appears to be trying to protect the woman and the other people by saying taking him instead of them. Goya describes the basic human characteristics one would do in this kind of situation. People are crying and sobbing because people are dying, men are surrendering to the army men because they do not want to die. He also painted the men that are dead because he wanted to show what the men with weapons were doing to the helpless men on the hill. This piece makes me feel sad and hurt for the people that are being executed. These people are unarmed and cannot defend for themselves against the army men. These rebels were only trying to protect their country from being overthrown by a foreign power and had every right to protect it.
Woman and children were even being killed during this horrific battle for Spanish freedom. Goya sends a very strong message to the world in this piece because it shows what the Spanish people went through to overcome Napoleon. They lost many lives and were treated inhumanly. When something, like art, is consider to be real, then that means it is the original piece of work created by the artist themselves. A copy of something, like art, means that the original piece was taken and re-created by another person besides the original creator. I would rather see the original piece of something because that piece itself shows what is really there or not. For example, when an art is copied, the two pieces will never be identical. I would not know if the copied piece was altered with and extra designed or material was added. In this painting I feel like Goya wanted to show the world that a person or political power should not treat another person inhumanly based on personal wants. I feel like he sent this message out because the people were all bunched together and traumatized by the French army soldiers pointing their guns at them.
This painting shows the integrity and community core values of Saint Leo. The Spanish rebels showed their honesty and loyalty to their county and people around them. As a community they stood together, protected each other and fought for freedom in their country. When the men in the painting were about to be shot they stood up proudly for their country and accepted what was about to happen. They did not back down to Napoleon or the soldiers and instead died for their country. I personally feel like I will not judge a person based on their ethnicity because of this painting. I think of the wars happening around the world and all the people being stereotyped in our country because of incidents happening. This makes me think deeper into my respect, personal development and integrity core values as well. This artwork was selected to be displayed in the Prado Museum because it symbolizes a big part of the freedom Spain established in its earlier years as a country. When people see this piece they will think of the people who sacrificed their lives for the people to live in Spain today.
Goya used oil canvas to paint and this created a great source of the difference between light and dark. He used the light colors to grab the viewer’s eyes on faces of people in his painting, this is called a Rembrantian style of painting design that contrast light and shadow (Janaro and Altshuler 124). In The Third of May 1808, the army men seem to be using a light to better their view of their victims in the dark. Goya puts a spot light on the Spanish rebels to tell what this piece is mainly about. He uses white on the male surrendering his life’s shirt to symbolize his acceptance to Christ and he is ready to go to heaven. Goya wanted his pieces to be realistic and to show how he felt about his pieces(Janaro and Altshuler 125).
His piece is of value to Spain because it resembles their cultural past events that took place in their country. The message he portrays in his artwork is very relevant in our generation. Our country has and is still overcoming liberation. Our country is attempting to help other countries overcome it as well and this painting symbolizes liberation. If the Spanish can stand up for their freedom then other countries and cultures can do the same. Somebody should have to feel trapped because somebody else wants to control them. Humans are meant to be free.