A galant gathering by Jacques-Philippe Le Bas


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A lovely “scene galante” by an 18th-century artist whose ultimate model undoubtedly remains Jean-Antoine Watteau.

A galant gathering by Jacques-Philippe Le Bas.

Jacques-Philippe Le Bas

Paris 1707 – 1783

A galant gathering

Red chalk.

138 x 152 mm – 5,43 x 5,98 in.

Trained by Hérisset and Tardieu, Lebas engraved for the famous collector Pierre Crozat a few of his paintings. He entered the Royal Academy in 1741 and was also made an associate member in the Rouen Academy, founded by his friend Jean-Baptiste Descamps. Amongst the hundreds of engravings he made, his most famous are perhaps Les Ports de France after  Joseph Vernet, a series to which he worked in collaboration with Charles Nicolas Cochin. His biography by Jules and Edmond de Goncourt contains many amusing anecdotes and reveals his epicurean and witty personality.

He more often used black chalk or lead pencil, a technique generally favored by engravers. Although drawn with red chalk, this bucolic scene, of a lively and joyful mood,  compares well with many drawings by the artist in the Stockholm National Museum ((NMH Anck 245 et 246; NMH 2991/1863).

Condition report – The sheet is slightly browned and pasted on Japan paper. Filled losses in down left corner and on the bordure, left center. Traces of inscriptions lower left and center. Pin holes lower right.