Nothing is known of Jean-Louis-Marie Prudhomme as an artist, though he was a renowned librarian and journalist during the French Revolution. He narrowly escaped execution during the Reign of Terror because of his pro-royalist writings. This highly finished watercolor, which entered the Morgan Library & Museum along with two others (inv. 2009.259) was perhaps made in preparation for one of Prudhomme's many publications. The scene features a nude Venus seen from behind surrounded by the arms that she gave to Aeneas. The idealized forms and the classical draperies are in a neoclassicist style also employed by Prudhomme's contemporaries, such as Jacques-Louis David (1748-1825).
Ysenberg-Birstein, former owner.
Bosthader, John, former owner.
McCrindle, Joseph F., former owner.