Goya - the witches and old women album

'These witches will tell'
Goya's Witches and Old Women Album currently exhibited at the Courtauld Gallery, is a disturbing collection of ink drawings and etchings. The exhibition can only be described as nightmarish, the sketch above shows a witch eating snakes. Goya made the album in the last years of his life, intending them to only be seen by a close circle of friends.

'Dream of a good witch / Wicked Woman'
Above left shows an old woman carrying a bundled of tied babies on her back. Above right is a witch killing her own child, which calls to mind Goya's equally disturbing painting of Saturn eating his son.

'Complain to time about it' 
Goya's figures are often squabbling as they tumble through the air. Goya's vision of women is decidedly misogynist. His concern with the age of his subjects is linked to his own failing health at the time, he was left completely deaf after a long illness.

'They love each other very much'
I came away from the exhibition feeling disturbed, as though I had glimpsed hell through Goya's eyes.
'Ridiculous Folly'