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Ingres, l’artiste et ses princes

Ingres, l’artiste et ses princes : Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. Portrait de Mme Duvaucey. 1807 (Salon de 1833), huile sur toile, 76 x 59 cm. Musée Condé, Chantilly. ©RMN-Grand Palais – Domaine de Chantilly / Adrien Didierjean.   

The exhibition

Chantilly-Orléans-Ingres: nothing to do with a prime-time programme - no TV news summary, no brain-teaser - just the intertwining of a place, an artist and a princely patronage, providing the opportunity for an exhibition of some one hundred labels that delves into the entire body of work.

Let's live dangerously, let's dare to be Orleanist! Especially in these times of censorship for non-grata ideas - including royalism! - and let's not forget that in those days, the crime could be democracy, because of a few attacks! Let's even double down and admire the patriotism of the Duc d'Aumale who, despite the exiles and vexations, rebuilt, refounded and offered to the Nation and to posterity in the name of a racial requirement. Aumale, the youngest son of Orléans, heir to his uncle Bourbon (the last of the Condé family), and therefore endowed with a colossal fortune, was introduced to the Fine Arts by Ary Scheffer. He collected outrageously, to the point of forming the second largest collection of ancient art after the Louvre, and took possession of five major works by Ingres. Although he was a contemporary of Ingres, the Duke did not commission any paintings directly from the Montalban artist. The first, in 1852, came from a purchase from the Prince of Salerno, his father-in-law, and the second from the Demidoff sale in 1863. Sixteen years later, with the acquisition of the Reiset collection, the Ingresque ensemble was complete, not to mention a number of substantial drawings. Hanging religiously in the Tribune room, it now appeared only sporadically, no doubt in some James Bond film. The end of the story? No. Behind this aridity of purpose, the psychological complexity of Ingres makes for breathtaking research.

Extract from the article by Vincent Quéau published in the N°107 de la revue Art Absolument. Publication date: July 13, 2023.


03/06/2023 - 01/10/2023