Jacques-Louis David was a French painter and draftsman, the most prominent painter of French Neoclassicism, and extremely influential on other European artists of his time. In the 1780s he created his signature style, which broke with the fantastic confections of Rococo art: strongly lit volumetric forms posed in large uncluttered spaces, and focusing on serious subjects from history and literature. David participated in the French Revolution and was imprisoned after Robespierre’s fall from power. After his release, he was an enthusiastic supporter of Napoleon. With the restoration of the monarchy in 1816, he went into exile in Brussels. David’s works are in the collections of the world’s major museums, including the Louvre, the Hermitage, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and dozens more.
Full title and publication information: “Napoleon Le Grand. D’aprés le Portrait de S.M. l’Empereur Fait par M’r. David son premier Peintre. [Napoleon the Great. After the Portrait of the Emperor by Monsieur David, His Premier Painter.] London. Published by S. Gans. No. 22, Southampton Street Strand.”
Condition: Generally very good with the usual overall light toning and wear.
“Jacques-Louis David.” The Grove Dictionary of Art. New York: Macmillan. 2000. Artnet.com. http://www.artnet.com/library/02/0215/T021541.asp (2 June 2009).
“Key Painting – First Empire.” Fondation Napoléon. 2008. http://www.napoleon.org/en/essential_napoleon/key_painting/premier_empire.asp (2 June 2009).
“The Emperor Napoleon in His Study at the Tuileries.” National Gallery of Art. 2009. http://www.nga.gov/collection/gallery/gg56/gg56-46114.html (2 June 2009).