Wednesday, 20 April 2011


After Goya's core premise is built around the re-emergence of two miniature paintings by Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes
74 years after having been presumed destroyed or looted following an air-raid on Madrid during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939).

You may scoff, or be unconvinced, at the conceit.

However, the air-raid, on November 19th, 1936, really did happen (SEE Antony Beevor's The Battle for Spain page 203), and did cause extensive damage to the Duke of Alba's Palacio de Liria, and artworks were destroyed, damaged and went missing.

In 2008 three drawings by Goya re-emerged after 130 years of being presumed lost.
In 2010 the three drawings on paper fetched a total of £4,010,150 at auction in London.
Go HERE to read the background on how the three drawings, last seen in a Paris exhibition in 1877, re-appeared in 2008.

And, just last week, (no, I'm not making this up) a painting by Goya (and a painting by El Greco) was discovered in a house in Alicante, 14 years after disappearing during transit from the United States to Spain after an exhibition in New York. The UK Independent covered the story HERE and, for more detail, go  HERE.

I find it uncanny how not only was the Goya re-discovered at this time, while review copies of After Goya are being distributed to magazines and blogs, but how there is a Barcelona connection. Yes, the re-discovered Goya once belonged to Catalan businessman, Julio Muñoz Ramonet, who owned properties on Carrer Muntaner and Carrer Avenir. Muñoz Ramonet's surviving family are currently involved in litigation with Barcelona City Council over ownership. Go HERE to read the background.

This story of re-discovery, happening as it does, combined with the spooky coincidence of After Goya being published on Goya's birthday, would be mannah for an adept and able book publicist. But, other than tell you about it, I'm  really not sure how best to exploit these coincidences.

I didn't know of either instance of re-discovery during the writing of After Goya. I first came across mention of the Alicante Goya on William Newton's fascinating blog - go HERE and scroll down.

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