Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (1780–1867) Portrait of Mlle Joséphine Nicaise-Lacroix, 1813
Signed, inscribed, and dated in graphite at the lower left, Ingres 1813 Rome.
10 1/8 x 7 7/8 inches (259 x 200 mm.)
Purchase, 1942; III 124b
Ingres frequently sketched his circle of friends and
family, documenting their personalities and fashions
in loving detail. Here, standing gracefully and
shown in three-quarter length, is his future wife's
cousin, Joséphine Nicaise-Lacroix (d. 1865).
Joséphine stands against a Doric column while
casually holding a small book in her left hand.
Is her dreamy expression the effect of the novel
that she has just been reading? Her otherwise
idealized, moon-shaped face incorporates several
highly naturalistic accents, such as a small blemish
below her lip. This portrait remained in the sitter's
family for over a hundred years before entering
the Morgan in 1942.