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Jacques Antoine Vallin

(circa 1760–1831, Paris)

A Pensive Young Woman Sitting Beneath a Tree with Two Doves Billing and Cooing. Pencil and chalk drawing, white and yellowish heightening. 28.1 x 22.7 cm. Circa 1800.

The painter and draughtsman, Jacques-Antoine Vallin, a protégé of the history painter Gabriel Doyen, began his training at the Académie Royale in Paris in 1779 when the Ancien régime was still in power. Among his teachers were Antoine François Callet and Antoine Renou. Vallin was regularly represented at the Paris Salon, to whose exhibitions he submitted landscapes and seascapes in the style of Vernet and Bidauld as well as mythological scenes and portraits in the years from 1791 to 1827. However, he soon gained a reputation for his charming depictions of nymphs and bacchants revelling in light-filled park landscapes.

The present sensitively executed study of a pensive young woman lost in wistful thought is a typical example of the elegance and aesthetic sense that flourished in the stylistic period under the Directory. The two doves billing and cooing introduce an amorous element into the scene. It could be a memento for a distant lover, or the young woman might be pining for a lost love. The concentrated, delicate drawing style is fully in harmony with the emotional nature of the scene. The artist has rendered the woman’s pretty face and fashionable curly hairstyle all’antica with great sensitivity.

6.500 €

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