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    Sale 2175

    Old Masters and 19th Century Art

    4 June 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 52

    Louis Jean François Lagrenée I (Paris 1725-1805)

    The Union of Painting and Sculpture

    Price Realised  


    Louis Jean François Lagrenée I (Paris 1725-1805)
    The Union of Painting and Sculpture
    signed and dated 'L.Lagrenée 1768.' (lower right)
    oil on canvas, oval
    31 x 23½ in. (78.7 x 59.7 cm.)

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    This painting and its pendant, Justice were exhibited at the 1769 Salon where Gabriel de Saint-Aubin made his characteristic drawings of them in a small sketchbook.

    Lagrenée's choice of subject may have been inspired by a painting in Louis XIV's collection entitled The Union of Painting and Drawing which at the time of its acquisition was attributed to Guido Reni. The union of painting and sculpture was also treated in a 1630s composition by Guercino. The subject, as the scales of Justice symbolize, indicates a more harmonious balance between the two arts than that of the Poussinist and Rubenist debate in the seventeenth century.

    We are grateful to Colin Bailey for confirming this attribution, on the basis of photographs (written communication, 12 November 2008).


    (Probably) Abbé Pommyer, acquired directly from the artist.


    E. Dacier, Le 'Livre de croquis' de Gabriel de Saint-Aubin, Paris, 1943, II.
    J. Seznac, ed., Salons, Oxford, 1957-67, IV, pp. 20-1, no. 22.
    M. Sandoz, Les Lagrenées, Paris, 1983, I, pp. 217-8, no. 188, p. XLVII, fig. 188 B.


    Paris, Salon, 1769.
    Munich, Haus der Kunst, Wettstreit der Künste: Malerei und Skulptur von Dürer bis Daumier, 1 February-5 May 2002, no. 82; also and Cologne, Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, 25 May-25 August 2002.