VIGEE-LE BRUN, Elisabeth Louise
The Baroness of Crussol
Painter to Queen Marie-Antoinette, Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun was obliged to live a great part of her life in exile after the Revolution because of her links with the court. She is one of the greatest portraitists of the end of the 18th century. Vigée-Lebrun painted this work on wood following a trip to the Netherlands. It is a form of homage to the Dutch School. The figure is holding a score for the opera by Gluck, the German musician, Echo and Narcissus. This is one of the most perfect portraits of the period. Here, Vigée-Lebrun reaches a refinement close to the masterpieces of David, with her harmonies of reds, blacks and greys and her scumble technique.