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Michel Dorigny

(probably 1616 Saint-Quentin - 1665 Paris)

Time Conquered by Love, Hope and Beauty. Engraving and etching, after Simon Vouet. 36.1 x 23.9 cm. 1646. Inventaire du Fonds Français 103, Robert-Dumesnil 103. Watermark: Grapes with countermark.

After training for five years under Georges Lallemand in Paris, Michel Dorigny soon joined the circle around the painter, Simon Vouet, with whom he developed a close and lasting friendship. Dorigny subsequently became one of the main printmaking interpreters of Vouet’s painted oeuvre and was also involved as a painter in several of the master’s artistic projects. The present engraving showing the allegory of time conquered by the personifications of love, hope and beauty, is one of the principal works of the eminent French Baroque master, Simon Vouet. The personification of time, in the form of the god Saturn, cowers on the ground and attempts to ward off the attack by his adversaries. While Amor and Spes drag him by the long feathers of his wings, Venus grabs his hair. Hovering arm in arm above the protagonists are the personifications of Fortuna and Fama. As stated in the couplet in the lower text margin, time - which normally holds sway over such ephemeral joys as love and beauty - is now conquered itself. Simon Vouet’s painting, which dates to around 1645, is now in the Musée du Berry in Bourges (oil on canvas, 187 x 142 cm, inv. no. MNR594). Dorigny’s superb print is distinguished by its great graphic finesse and meticulous attention to detail. A very fine, even and sharp impression with margins. Minor ageing, otherwise in excellent condition. Literature: Jacques Thuillier, Vouet, exh. cat. Paris, Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, Paris 1990, p. 346, under no. 63.

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