This canvas represents the studio of Etienne-Prosper BERNE-BELLECOUR (1838 -1910) of which we know a photograph taken by Edmond Bénard (1838 - 1907) photographer renowned for his series of views of artists' studios: "artists at them "taken in the years 1880 - 1890. Deposited in the national library, they represent the interiors of artists exhibiting at the Salon.
Many painters, and this from the 17th century with the great Rembrandt, represented themselves in their studios. In the 19th century, Courbet, Bazille, Gauguin represented their workshop in many famous paintings. Most of the time we see the artist picturing himself in front of his easel, brush and palette in hand.
In the 19th century the workshops were very numerous in Paris, simple workshops in the attic with large glass roofs, and for the most prominent painters in private mansions.
The painter brings together in his studio the world in which
The workshop is a summary of the real and imaginary world in which the painter moves; it is a compendium of the customs of the time and of the collective imagination conveyed by literature, in particular for exoticism.
Any workshop must therefore have a framework recreating the illusion of "elsewhere" in order to put the model in situation.
The workshop will also be a photographic theme, the "studio view", a pictorial genre, therefore becomes a cliché. The roles are reversed, the artist becomes a model: it is the external gaze, that of the photographer, friend or intruder, which gives his point of view.
The center of the perspective is on the staircase leading probably to the mezzanine which occupies the top of the painting and most often serves the painter's apartments, surmounted by an imposing chandelier in the Dutch style, as can be found on a number of photographs of workshops by Edmond Benard
On the right side of the painting, the painter, palette in hand, is seated on a fireside chair painting his model: a soldier, sword in hand. Behind him, a summary of the return to the Renaissance era with a two-part buffet, surrounded by chairs, all topped by an offering dish framed by guns.
On the left side, we switch to Orientalism with an opening framed by banners decorated with oriental motifs and Japanese vases. To complete this openness to the distance, a pseudo oriental living room is recreated in the foreground with an oriental rug and a sofa covered with a colored fabric completed with an oriental side table with mother-of-pearl inlay on which we have placed a planter with its indoor palm tree.
As a counterpoint to this "elsewhere", an easel with his finished painting occupies the right corner of the painting, recalling the daily reality of the one who is sitting painting.
30 000 €