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Jacques Couché

and Michel Vauthier. Receuil de Paysages / Enrichis de Figures et d’Animaux. 5th, 12th and 13th deliveries. 15 engravings in crayon manner. Each approx. 39.9 x 27 cm. (1802). In the original blue cover. À Paris chez Michel Vauthier ... et Ravault.

The engraver, Jacques Couché, was trained by Levasseur and Alianet. He is known primarily as the publisher of the monumental set of engravings entitled Galerie du Palais Royal, which he began under the protection of the Duke of Orléans around 1784 but did not complete until 1808. Many famous draughtsmen and engravers of the period, such as Wicar, Borel, Romanet and Guttenberg, were involved in this project. Couché supplied further engraved illustrations for the Voyage à Naples et en Sicilie by the Abbé de Saint-Non. No less ambitious was the publication of the present Receuil des Paysages, which appeared in 1802 in twenty-four deliveries of five engravings each. Couché carried out this project together with his colleague, Michel Vauthier, about whose biography nothing certain is known. The total edition of this manual for art students must have been modest, however, for the individual deliveries are extremely rare. The fifth book has a commentary printed in French, English and German, an indication that both authors deliberately aimed to attract an international public. The individual engravings show tree studies and picturesque landscapes after the artist’s own inventions as well as after models by Boquet and J. Vernet. They have been executed in a somewhat rough and ready crayon technique. However, the naivety of the drawing and the purist simplicity of the prints exert a special appeal. Very fine impressions with full margins. Slightly foxed, minor ageing, otherwise in excellent condition.

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