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Jean-Baptiste Isabey (1767-1855) "Portrait of two playmates", extremely important work! 14000 EUR
Jean-Baptiste Isabey (1767-1855) "Portrait of two playmates", extremely important work!
Fantastically drawn, it is an extremely important and very rare (it is practically impossible to find at the current antique market works of this artist dating before 1800!) large portrait drawing by Jean-Baptiste Isabey, the best European miniaturist of the turn of 19th century. A similar drawing with portrait of Mme de Staël (1797) belongs to collection of the Louvre (see our image nr. 7). Likewise, our drawing was made in the last years of the 18th century, the argument for it being not only the date of comparable Louvre piece, but also the important for Isabey stylistic characteristic - the floating gauzy veil above the girls' heads. As Marion W. Osmond in her book "Jean Baptiste Isabey /The Fortunate painter" (London, 1947) writes, "this artist's vogue of the floating veil with which he draped the heads of his sitters may have been inspired by Napoleon's wife (since 1796 - sic!) Josephine".
Jean-Baptiste Isabey (1767 Nancy - 1855 Paris) was the most famous of all European portrait miniature painters of the turn of the 19th century. In 1785 he went to Paris to study under David, but the great master had just left for Rome. At first in a tight financial situation, Isabey finally was ordered to paint miniatures of the children of King's brother, Count D'Artois. By means of this commission he came to court, met the Queen Marie-Antoinette and obtained an apartment in Versailles. In 1786 David returned from Rome, accepted Isabey as pupil without payment and favoured him in every way. At the time of Revolution the artist already acquired significant clientele in Paris. He portrayed most of Convention members, became one of the intimates of Mme Bonaparte's house. Isabey was a drawing master of Hortense and Eugene de Beauharnais; he controlled the ceremony of Napoleon's coronation and organized festivities for the Empire.
Our additional images show several other portrait drawings by Isabey.
Condition: good; few dot-like foxings; originally drawn in oval on a four-angled sheet, it was later cut off (with signature outside of drawing) and laid on a mount
Creation Year: late 1790s
Measurements: UNFRAMED:30,0x24,0cm/11,8x9,4in FRAMED: 47,6x39,9cm/18,7x15,7in
Object Type: Framed miniature
Style: Portrait Miniatures
Technique: charcoal and watercolor on paper (oval)
Inscription: signed: Isabey
Creator: Jean-Baptiste Isabey
Creator Dates: 1767 Nancy-1855 Paris
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