Signed in pen and brown ink lower left: Saint quentin Del:
Emmanuel-Alfred Beurdeley, Paris (L.421);
his sale n° VII, 8 – 10 June 1920,Paris;
Georges Bourgarel, Paris;
his sale, 13 – 15 November 1922, lot 143;
sale, Paris Drouot ,12 June 1972, lot 19;
private collection, USA
Little is known about the life and the career of Jacques-Philippe-Joseph de Saint-Quentin. He was a disciple of François Boucher, and distinguished himself as a genre and landscape painter, draftsman, and etcher. His talent enabled him to win a place at the l’École de l’Académie where he won a second medal in 1757, and a first in 1760. In 1762, he won the Prix de Rome which allowed him to travel to Italy. However, it appears he never went there, preferring to spend most of his career in the workshop of François Boucher. Only after Boucher’s death did Saint Quentin settle down on his own. He exhibited paintings and drawings at the exposition du Colisée (Paris), in 1776.
Our signed drawing is a rare example of Saint-Quentin’s graphic technique. The artist used three chalks to give life to his model. The black chalk, applied by stamping, smoothly sketches the girl’s curls; the red chalk highlights the skin tones of her face; and the blue ribbon, braided into the hair, brings freshness and vivacity to this child’s portrait.