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    Sale 2134

    Old Master and 19th Century Drawings

    29 January 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 59

    Attributed to Jean-Honoré Fragonard (Grasse 1732-1806 Paris)

    An elegant young lady seated wearing an elaborate hat

    Price Realised  

    Attributed to Jean-Honoré Fragonard (Grasse 1732-1806 Paris)
    An elegant young lady seated wearing an elaborate hat
    with inscription and date 'Roma 1774'
    black chalk, pen and brown ink, brown and grey wash on light brown paper
    14¼ x 10 7/8 inches (362 x 276 mm.)


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    Ananoff attributed this drawing to François-André Vincent (1746-1816) who was Fragonard's traveling companion during part of his second visit to Italy from 1774-75 along with his patron Bergeret de Grancourt whose inscription can be seen in the lower right corner of the drawing. Ananoff lists two other versions of this subject, one in a private collection, the other at the Art Institute of Chicago (Ananoff, nos. 1286, 1287) which are today generally considered as not autograph. The combination of poor condition and poorly executed restoration obscures the original quality of the drawing, making confirmation of its attribution quite difficult. It has suffered due to exposure to light which has darkened the paper and faded the wash. At some point restoration was attempted on the face which has led to its much paler tone, and the facial features were strengthened.
    This drawing should date from the 1774-75 trip to Italy. Bergeret's distinct handwriting in the lower right supports a dating to that period and attribution to Fragonard. The sitter has traditionally been identified as the Duchess of Cumberland who Bergeret describes in his journals. However, it has also been suggested that the sitter is Bergeret's chambermaid who accompanied him on his travels in Italy and who he later married.

    Provenance

    C. Groult, Paris; Paris, Hôtel Drouot, 21-22 June 1920, lot 150.


    Pre-Lot Text

    Property from the Collection of William & Eleanor Wood Prince, Chicago, Illinois


    Literature

    Baron Roger Portalis, Fragonard, sa vie, son oeuvre, Paris, 1889, p. 305.
    J. Wilhelm, Bergeret de Grancourt, Voyage d'Italie 1773-1774, Paris, 1948, repr. p. 50 (incorrectly stated in the Tables des illustrations as in the Musée de Besançon).
    A. Ananoff, L'oeuvre dessiné de Fragonard, Paris, 1970, III, p. 52, no. 1288 (as by François-André Vincent).
    P. Rosenberg, Les Fragonard de Besançon, Milan, 2006, p. 207.