Jean-Louis Prévost was a painter of landscapes and flowers; and frequently worked in watercolor. Born in Nointel, France, he was a student of Bachelier and a member of a circle of painters associated with the great botanical artist Gerrit van Spaendonck. He was a member of the Academy of Saint-Luc, exhibiting paintings of flowers and fruits there from 1791 to 1810, and he also exhibited at the Academie Royale. His works are in the collection of a number of French museums. His best known work is the Collection des Fleurs et des Fruits (Vilquin, Paris: 1805). Prevost botanical prints in similar size and style were published “chez Basset,” Rue St. Jacques in the early 19th century. In addition, in the same period, a series of Cahiers de Fleurs dessineés d’aprés Nature after Prévost and engraved by A. Legrand was issued. Prints based on paintings by Prévost were separately issued as well, in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, some bound in composite sets of prints by various makers.
An original Prévost botanical watercolor, and three Prévost botanical prints are in the collection of the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation at Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and are illustrated and described in a book of the collection. According to authors Brindle and White, Prévost’s still life images (specifically flowers and fruit in baskets in the Hunt collection) “reflect a characteristically French trend away from Baroque extravagance and toward casual informality.”
Full publisher information: A Paris chez Basset. Md. d’Estampes et Fabricant de Papiers peinte, rue St. Jacques au coin de celle des Mathurins, No. 64.
Condition: Generally very good, recently professionally cleaned and deacidified, with minor remaining light toning and wear.
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Brindle, John V. and White, James J. Flora Portrayed. Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: 1985. p. 48.
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