Then something happened. According to the Getty,
In 1887 Gemito suffered a mental collapse and withdrew to one room, concentrating entirely on drawing and seeing few friends.Italian wikipedia blames the commission for that marble Charles V:
Disoriented by the unusual historical theme, the artist could only make the plaster model and the bronze sketch of Charles V, unable to translate it into marble: the work, which was conceived academically in the old style and was totally detached from his poetics, caused him a serious nervous breakdown that led him to hospitalization.A "nervous breakdown" seems a rather lame description of what happened to Gemito, since he suffered from hallucinations for a decade afterward and did not resume sculpting for twenty years. A year after the breakdown Gemito escaped from the nursing home where he had been hospitalized and spent the years that followed in seclusion at home.