© Daniel Vázquez Díaz. VEGAP, Madrid, 2022


El torero "Fortuna"
The Bullfighter “Fortuna”
Daniel Vázquez Díaz
Graphite and grease pencil on paper
Printed area size: 30 × 26 cm
Paper size: 30 × 26 cm
ca. 1920
Signed in the lower right corner; inscription in the lower left corner: "Fortuna"
Born: Nerva, Huelva, 1882
Died: Madrid, 1969
El torero "Fortuna" © COLECCIONES Fundación MAPFRE

© Daniel Vázquez Díaz. VEGAP, Madrid, 2022


In 1918, returning to Spain after a 12 year stay in Paris, Daniel Vázquez Díaz brought to Madrid the influences of Cézanne and that of a tempered Cubism. Without ever renouncing figuration, he developed a tectonic and modern style that found its maximum expression in drawing. The motifs in his work were reminiscent of the Spanish pictorial tradition also treated by Regoyos, Zuloaga, Solana and Picasso. Among Vázquez Díaz’s preferred motifs, his depictions of bullfighting stand out for their dramatic quality.

Diego Mazquiarán Torróntegui, nicknamed Fortuna, was a bullfighter born in Sestao in 1895 who, under the guidance of Rafael el Gallo, took the alternativa (one of bullfighting’s rites of passage) in Madrid in 1916. In his portrait, Vázquez Díaz captured the bullfighter’s individual features. Nevertheless, he simultaneously universalized the model, drawing Fortuna without any of the elements of a bullfighter’s traditional attire and with a concentrated and serious expression.

The composition is characterized by a rotundity of volumes that is reminiscent of Cézanne and denotes the mark of the Spanish school, particularly Zurbarán, who Vázquez Díaz admired. The head is executed through planes of light and shadow based on abstraction. These lights and shadows suggest color relationships and generate contrasts and oppositions that make up the figure making the drawing more precise.

El torero "Fortuna" © COLECCIONES Fundación MAPFRE

© Daniel Vázquez Díaz. VEGAP, Madrid, 2022

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