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Boucher image

François Boucher (1703–1770)
Adoration of the Shepherds, ca. 1761–62
Pen and brown ink, brown and red wash, brown and black chalk, heightened with white chalk, worked wet, over traces of black chalk, on pink-prepared paper
11 3/8 x 14 5/8 inches (289 x 371 mm)
Thaw Collection; EVT 184
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Of the artists who defined French art under the ancien régime, Boucher was perhaps the most prolific. This powerfully illumined sheet unites his lyrical sensibility for religious subjects and the complex experimentation with media and techniques that characterizes works from the last decade of his career. The subject is an unusual combination of a Nativity and an Adoration of the Shepherds and appears to be one of several explorations of nocturnal scenes dating after 1755.

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The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.