Antoine Watteau

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Antoine Watteau
Young Woman Wearing a Chemise. Verso: various slight sketches in red chalk, including a sketch of a foot
ca. 1718
Black, red, and white chalk.
6 7/8 x 8 1/8 inches (174 x 206 mm)
Thaw Collection.

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Watteau’s drawing, made around 1718, is one of eight intimate studies of a female model captured in a variety of informal poses. Not intended as preparatory for any painting, these drawings were made in private rented rooms where Watteau and his friends took pleasure in “posing the model, painting and drawing.” As a fully formed, mature artist, Watteau continued to draw from the live model, even if his nude studies—so immediate and seemingly natural to modern eyes—were found wanting by academic standards.

John Postle Heseltine (Lugt 1507); Adrien Fauchier-Magnan, Paris; his sale, London, Sotheby's, 4 December 1935, no. 88, repr.; Mr. and Mrs. Siegfried Kramarsky, New York, 1957; Rosenberg & Stiebel, New York; Norton Simon Foundation, Los Angeles; Mr. and Mrs. Eugene V. Thaw.

Watermark: grapes within a double circle.

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