Lot 94
  • 94

Jean-Baptiste Deshays Colleville near Rouen 1729 - 1765 Paris

7,000 - 9,000 GBP
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  • Jean-Baptiste Deshays
  • joseph and potiphar's wife
  • signed and dated lower right: Deshays 1762
  • pen and brown ink and wash, heightened with white over black chalk


The artist's posthumous sale, 26 March (and following) 1765, as part of lot 39 (28 livres, to Bourlamaque);
Hermann Schickman Gallery, New York, 1966, no. 60;
Christian Humann, New York, puchased at his Estate sale, New York, Sotheby's, 30 April 1982, lot 72

Catalogue Note

Deshays exhibited a painting of this subject in 1751 at the Ecole de l'Académie and another one at the Salon in 1763.1  Neither composition has survived in full and Sandoz suggests that the few related drawings and prints, which he lists under the earlier work, may in fact be for the later version.  The present study, dated 1762, could be preparatory for the Salon painting.  A print of the Head of Potiphar's Wife by Bonnet after Deshays shows some differences in expression, dress and position from the figure in the present study.2

Deshays was a pupil of Collin de Vermont, Jouvenet and Restout and then of Boucher, whose daughter he married. His work was much admired by his contemporaries but his early death cut short his promising career.

1. Marc Sandoz, Jean-Baptiste Deshays, Paris 1977, pp. 62-64, no. 5 and p. 87, no. 77-1

2. Sandoz, op. cit., p. 30, fig. 14