Art: The Alternative Tradition

Truth has Died by Goya

Truth has Died by Goya

"The first casualty when war comes is truth" said a United States orator. This is the reality underlying, in Goya's Disasters of War, the second-last print, Truth has Died. Though arising from the 1808 French invasion of Spain, the series is pertinent to war in general.

The dignitaries sanctimoniously presiding over the demise of naked Truth are disconcerted by the series' concluding image, when Truth threatens to rise again. This recurrent hope, recognised by artists of the alternative tradition in successive generations, is the optimistic prospect at the heart of all great tragedy. --