Лого на Софийска Градска Художествена Галерия
Анимация по време на зареждане


29 October 2013 - 08 December 2013

For the first time in Bulgaria is displayed the cycle of engravings The Horrors of War created by the great Spanish artist Francisco Jose de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828). The exhibition is set up by the Cervantes Institute jointly with San Fernando Academy of Fine Arts, and its curator is Juan Bordes. Up to now the exposition has visited various centers of Instituto Cervantes round the world, such as Tokyo, Beijing, New Delhi, Warsaw, Krakow and more. The last point of the journey is Sofia, in the halls of Sofia City Art Gallery.

The exhibition includes 82 prints. The aim is to contribute to the promotion and study of this important series of prints. For this purpose, the printed works of the cycle are complemented with photographs by contemporary photo-reporters who from 1839 until now take the same anti-war approaches that, with his genius and amazing expressive power, Goya himself was taking.

The series of engravings Horrors of War (1810-1820) is conceived as an act of pacifism, by means of which the artist is not taking anybody's side, but is exposing the barbarity of the two sides in a war conflict. They are generated by the Spanish War of Independence (1808 -1814) that broke out as a reaction against the invasions of the French Emperor Napoleon. Goya is trying to go beyond the historical facts. The idea occured to him in Zaragoza, where he went at the invitation of General Palafox to report about the heroic defense of the city besieged by French troops, but instead he finds ruins.

"The Horrors" can be divided into three parts. In the first part Goya illustrates stories about real events with unquestionable authenticity, but in his prints he goes beyond the specific facts, loading them with a critical charge of more general character. In the second part the artist depicts the experience of war in the streets of Madrid, displaying the horrible year of hunger 1811, and describing war through its impact on people's daily lives. Finally, he makes a few prints in a symbolic code, that he names "categorical caprices." In them Goya focuses on the political situation in the postwar period, criticizing the establishment of absolutism and breaking off with the ideals of the Constitution.

In 1862 San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts gains the eighty plates of the cycle The Horrors of War. In the following year1863 this important series of etchings is printed for the first time. Until then The Horrors of War have been recognized only through the three available copies from the series, and through the small number of test prints, made by the great artist during his lifetime. Since then, six copies of the cycle have been printed, and the cycle itself is supplemented in 1870 with two new plates by the Frenchman Paul Lefort. Through these engravings the views of Goya on the horrors of war become known to the world.

The created therein images of his personal experiences herald to a great extent the photographic language, because they are perceived as photo shots. They miss the preconceived composition that can make them resemble arranged scenes, or can soften their heartbreaking message. Furthermore, the engravings contain areas without information - an effect that a photographer will achieve through a smear or a flash. Finally, just like in photography, Goya boosts the documentary character of the scenes through titles like "I saw it", "That too," or "It happened that way."

The eighty-two prints making up the cycle The Horrors of War are shown grouped into seven sections - The front, The Victims, The Executions, The Mass migrations and looting, The Hunger, The Woman, The Post-War Period, and do not follow the numbering of the metal plates. The aim is to outline the main themes and the ideas interwoven with them that Goya develops in the entire series.


23 October 2013 - 21 November 2013

The exhibition celebrates the 80th anniversary of the birth of Lyuben Dimanov – a prominent artist of diverse talents, as testified by his noteworthy contribution to various art genres and respectable presence on both the Bulgarian and the European art scenes.

Lyuben Dimanov’s art is among the most significant phenomena in Bulgarian visual arts. One of the leading figures having blazed the trail of new approaches to visual art in the 1960’s, he left a mark that contributed to the development of graphic arts and illustration in our country, creating idiosyncratic, memorable and monumental imagery. The tamed energy of his etchings or water colors, paintings, collages or illustrations move the viewer with its forcefulness and conclusiveness, as well as with the fine nuances of subtle sensitivity. Dimanov’s drawing, which is decorative and elevated, powerful and exquisite at the same time, is not only an introduction to the art of depiction, but also a bridge to spirituality.

The SCAG exhibition features selected works belonging to the genres of painting, graphic arts, drawing and collage, presenting various periods of Lyuben Dimanov’s artistic development, starting from the early 1960’s through to the present day. The centerpiece of the exhibition is a 10-piece series of paintings devoted to the ten commandments. Bibliophile editions such as “The Flowers of Evil”, “Sonnets”, “The Divine Comedy”, “When Flame and Rose Become One” are reminiscent of the highest peaks of the artist’s career in book design and illustration. Staying true to his identity in both his early works created in Bulgaria and his mature works created in Paris, the artist reveals the product of years-long artistic development, constituting a blend of expressiveness and spiritual messages.

An exhibition catalogue is available.

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Vaska Emanuilova Gallery