Ferdinand-Victor-Eugène Delacroix (Charenton-Saint-Maurice 1798-1863 Paris)
Ferdinand-Victor-Eugène Delacroix (Charenton-Saint-Maurice 1798-1863 Paris)

Studies of cats, other felines and two female nudes seen from behind

Details
Ferdinand-Victor-Eugène Delacroix (Charenton-Saint-Maurice 1798-1863 Paris)
Studies of cats, other felines and two female nudes seen from behind
with inscription 'E. Delacroix' and inscribed with scales
pencil, pen and brown ink, brown wash, watermark J. Douchet
9 x 12½ in. (227 x 317 mm.)
Provenance
Jules Husson Fleury, called Champfleury (cf. L. 441); Paris, 26-28 January 1891.
H. Vever (L. 2491b).

Lot Essay

Another study of cats of the same provenance, inscription, and of approximately the same dimensions was sold at Christie's New York, 21 November 1996, lot 38. That drawing was dated by Lee Johnson to the early 1830s. Other studies of cats by Delacroix are illustrated in A. Robaut, L'oeuvre complète de Eugène Delacroix, Paris, 1885, nos. 342-8. A drawing of a cat dated to 1824-29 is in the Louvre (M. Sérullaz, Dessins d'Eugène Delacroix, Inventaire général des dessins, Paris, 1984, I, no. 1078).
Champfleury (1821-1889), whose real name was Jules Husson Fleury, was of a modest background. At an early age he left his native Laon to work in a book shop on the quai des Grands Augustins in Paris. Later he became friends with Baudelaire, Courbet, Bonvin, Nadar and Journet. His first book, Chien Caillou, written in 1847 was praised by Victor Hugo, and he later wrote numerous books on caricatures and on Monnier and Daumier. Champfleury also collected Delacroix's drawings and probably received a number of them from his wife who was Delacroix's god-daughter. Champfleury had a particular affinity with cats, and in 1870 he published a book called Les Chats, illustrated by contemporary artists such as Manet.
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