By the 1820s, Ingres’s exasperation with drawn portraits led him to complain: “I don’t want to do [portraits] any more. . . . It’s a considerable waste of time, fruitless effort, given the dryness of the subject matter.” His portraits from this period thus tend to feature friends and intimates. Appointed secretary-general of the Seine in 1826, Defresne also owned at least two paintings by the artist. Adolphe-Marcellin was thirty two years old when he commissioned this portrait of himself in 1825. That summer, he married the fifteen-year-old Sophie Leroy; the artist depicted the new Madame Defresne the following year.
Portrait of Adolphe-Marcellin Defresne
16 11/16 x 11 1/2 inches (424 x 292 mm)
Adolphe-Marcellin Defresne (1793-1869); Charles-Victor) Guillaume-Marcellin Comte de Fresne, Paris (descendant of Defresne, who died without issue in 1891); Mme Edouart-Henri Marcier de Lostende, born Cecile-Elisabeth-Philiberte de Lostende de Reignefort (died in Paris in 1916; widow of the son of Marie-Phillipe Mercier and of his wife, nee Adele Leroy, who was Sophie's sister), or from her daughter Marquise Jean-Marie-Barthelemy de Las Cases, nee Madeleine Marcier de Lostende de Las Cases (died at the Chateau de la Presle near Moulins 1898); Jean Marie-Barthelemy Marquis de Las Cases (widower of the last; died 1923); Amedee Gay (died 1957) and his wife, nee Jacqueline des Las Cases (daughter of the former, died 1976); Marianne Feilchenfeldt and her son, Walter Feilchenfeldt, Zurich; Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw, New York.