"Portrait of a young boy", dated 1849
Oil on canvas, signed and dated in the middle right
Dimensions: 47.5 x 39.5 cm; with frame 67 x 61 cm
Marie Pauline Adrienne Coeffier, born Lescuyer, married Louis Edouard Coeffier in 1833.
Painter in oil and pastellist, she studied at Leon Coignet's studio. She specializes in portraiture and exhibits at Salons from 1849 to 1868. Her talent as a portraitist sets her up alongside the greatest. Marie Coeffier becomes an official painter when she paints the portrait of Empress Eugenie in 1863.
This portrait depicts a young child. The artist poses his model so that it appears frontally to the viewer. Its stature and attribute, a small shotgun, indicates that it is an academic portrait, commissioned by an aristocratic family hunting.
Marie Coeffier goes into the details with subtlety. It gives shine to fabrics, whose patterns energize the whole and contrast with the softness of the child's face. Her black hair frames her ebony eyes, which the painter enlivens with a touch of light. Her pink cheeks echo the bright colors of her garment, whose fine lace collar isolates the face to give it all its place.
Emile Bellier de la Chavignerie, Louis Auvray, "General Dictionary of Artists of the French School, from the beginning of the arts of drawing until 1882 inclusive: painters, sculptors, architects, engravers and lithographers", Volume 1, Paris, Renouard Bookstore, 1882, p. 150
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