The 3rd of May

3rd of May, Francisco Goya, Park West Gallery

TITLE: "The 3rd of May 1808 in Madrid: The Executions on Principe Pio Hill"

ARTIST: Francisco Goya

DATE: 1814

WHY WE CHOSE IT: Francisco Goya was commissioned to paint his famed masterpiece, “The 3rd of May,” by the provisional government of Spain. From the Museo del Prado:

A depiction of the execution of patriots from Madrid by a firing squad from Napoleon’s army in reprisal for their uprising against the French occupation on the second of May, 1808.

The French soldiers are at the right of the composition, with their backs to the viewer. They aim their rifles at the Madrilenes who are to die. The scene’s drama and tension are emphasized by the use of light, which strongly illuminates the heroes, making it possible to distinguish their characters and attitudes in a detailed psychological character study.

SOURCE: Museo del Prado, Madrid

Fine art by Francisco Goya is available through Park West Gallery and its cruise art auctions at sea. Learn more at