Item Number: 108128
Title: JEAN BARBAULT 1718-1762 : Le théâtre de la vie italienne
Author: Jacquot, Dominique (ed)
Price: Not Available
Description: Strasbourg: Editions des Musées de Strasbourg, 2010. 24cm., pbk., 207pp. illus., most in color. Exhibition catalogue. Summary: This year the Museum of Fine Arts, Strasbourg will present an exhibit focused around the painter Jean Barbault (Viarmes (current Val-d’Oise) 1718 - Rome, 1762). This seemed an opportune moment to spotlight such an enticing artist since the museum acquired one of his masterpieces just a few short months ago. The exhibition thus unveils a complete, eloquent panorama of his work. Barbault is renowned for whimsical figures painted with virtuosity and refined color as well as canvases treating “Mascarades” organized by residents at the Academy of France in Rome. He also signed landscapes of ruins and considered himself a “painter of History”. As an added feature the exhibition is showing a series representing his French contemporaries working in Rome at the same period, including Fragonard, who, like him were deeply attracted to Ancient (fascinating) and modern (picturesque) Rome and dazzled by Italian light. Last year the Museum of Fine Arts of Strasbourg further enriched its collection (thanks to a purchase made possible by the City of Strasbourg and by the Fonds Régional d’Acquisition des Musées / Regional Fund for Museum Acquisitions) with a major painting entitled Neapolitan Shepard and buffalo cow leaving the grotto by Jean Barbault. This is one of the mid-18th century’s most attractive works of French (and Italian) painting. Its subject matter and spiritual treatment personify the very essence of the Age of Enlightenment. The painting is a masterpiece done in Italy circa 1750 by an artist who largely remains in the shadows despite exhibitions previously shown at the Museums of Beauvais, Angers and Valence, 1974-1975. The exhibit – and its catalog – gives an overview of his painted work. Barbault settled in Rome in 1747, remaining in this fascinating city and fully integrating himself into Italian life until his death. He was an original artist, the author of characters in typical Italian costume and exotic figures for Mascarade, who also undertook the register of ruins. Despite a rather dramatic existence, he considered himself an artist-in-full.
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