The Dog ( or in Spanish El Perro or Perro Semihundido)is the name given to this painting by Francisco GOYA, in the Museo del Prado, Madrid
It shows the head of a small black dog with its snout lifted, its ears pulled back and its eyes looking up and towards the right. The dog itself is almost lost in the vastness of the rest of the image, which is empty except for a dark sloping area near the bottom of the picture. This represents an unidentifiable mass which conceals the animal’s body. It is an enigmatic painting, which is often seen a symbolic depiction of man’s futile struggle against malevolent forces.
The black mass around the dog might be quicksand, earth or some other material in which the dog is being buried. It has been struggling unsuccessfully to free itself, and now it can do nothing but look skywards hoping for an intervention that will never come. And the vast upper, dirty ochre sky intensifies the feeling of the dog’s isolation and the hopelessness of its situation.
Dove sei? – gli occhi urlavano muti –
Tendimi la mano
Strappami agli artigli del baratro.
Sempre al tuo fianco
Senza chiedere in cambio
Che una briciola di pane e d’affetto
Ora – ora io ho bisogno di te
Per non essere annientato.
Ma tu non hai pietà