• Old Master & 19th Century Pain auction at Christies

    Sale 2282

    Old Master & 19th Century Paintings, Drawings, & Watercolors

    27 January 2010, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 293

    Jean Baptiste Greuze (Tournus 1725-1805 Paris)

    Portrait of a young woman, bust length, with a black scarf

    Price Realised  

    Jean Baptiste Greuze (Tournus 1725-1805 Paris)
    Portrait of a young woman, bust length, with a black scarf
    oil on canvas, oval
    22 3/8 x 18¾ in. (57.5 x 47.6 cm.)


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    Head of a Young Woman was in the celebrated collection of Pierre Louis Paul Randon de Boisset (1708-1776), an immensely wealthy fermier général and Reçeveur Général des Finances of Lyon, who built up a huge library and extensive collection of paintings, drawings, sculptures and porcelains. Advised by the artists Jean Baptiste Greuze, François Boucher and Hubert Robert, Randon de Boisset assembled one of the finest Dutch and Flemish picture cabinets in Europe, which sold after his death for sums not again equaled in the 18th century.

    The present lot is closely related to Greuze's famous painting La Cruche Cassée (Paris, Musée du Louvre), which was finished in 1777 and was in the collection of the Marquise du Barry. Our canvas must have been executed only slightly earlier and would have been among Randon de Boisset's final purchases before his death. It appeared with a pendant as lot 208 in his estate sale, but it was still owned by his descendants (according to Eudel and Martin) when it was sold in 1885. It was one of 17 paintings and pastels by Greuze to appear in the sale.

    Provenance

    P-L-P Randon de Boisset (1708-1776), Paris; (+) Paris, 27 February 1777, lot 208, as 'Deux bustes de femme, dont un représentante la modestie. Ces deux tableaux charmants, & qui plaisent infiniment, sont peints sur toile, chacun de forme ovale, hauteur 21 pouces, largeurs 17 pouces.'
    (Presumably) bought back by the family.
    Sold by the descendants of Randon de Boisset, 1885 (according to Eudel and Martin).
    Jacquesson Collection, Paris.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A SOUTH AMERICAN COLLECTOR


    Literature

    P. Eudel, L'Hôtel Drouot et la Curiosité, Paris, 5e année, 1886, 5, p. 430.
    J. Martin, Catalogue raisonné de l'oeuvre de Greuze, Paris, 1908, p. 37, no. 539.


    Exhibited

    Geneva, Musée d'art et d'histoire, De Watteau á Cezanne, 7 July-30 September 1951, no. 32.