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Details & Cataloguing

Victorian, Pre-Raphaelite & British Impressionist Art

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London

James-Jacques-Joseph Tissot
1836-1902
PORTRAIT OF A YOUNG WOMAN IN A CONSERVATORY
signed and dated l.r.: J.J. Tissot 1895
pastel
162.5 by 92.5cm., 64 by 36½in.
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Literature

Willard E. Misfeldt, The Albums of James Tissot, 1982, illustrated p.112, no.IV-30;
James Tissot 1836-1902, exhibition catalogue for Barbican Art Gallery in London, Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester, Musée du Petit Palais in Paris, 1984-1985, p.93, illustrated p.91 fig.39;
Krystyna Matayjaszkiewicz (Ed.), James Tissot, 1985, p.77, illustrated fig.31 as A Portrait

Catalogue Note

In 1882, after eleven successful years painting in London, Tissot returned to paris and chose pastel as his new medium, recognising an opportunity to develop new patronage. Public interest in pastel was revived by a widespread interest in eighteenth century art, and the innovative work of contemporary artists like Edgar Degas and Edouard Manet. Tissot received immediate critical acclaim and popular success with the portraits in pastel which he exhibited at the Palais de'l'industrie in Paris in 1883. Thereafter Tissot executed virtually all of his portraits in this medium. The demands of an unfamiliar medium seem to have spurred his imagination, and these works have a sense of sophisticated chic that had faded in his last English pictures. He became the favoured portraitist of a smart element of society, aristocrats, actresses and cocottes. His portraits are remarkable for the brilliance of their record of Parisian high life.

By 1895, when the present work was executed, Tissot had already completed two journeys to the Middle East and was immersed in his illustrations of the New Testament. Interestingly, the present work demonstrates that Tissot never truly abandoned the subject of fashionably dressed ladies of society. The present picture is almost identical in size and medium and is similar in effect to Tissot's portrait of The Princess de Broglie (Sotheby's New York, 24 November 1989, lot 113).

Victorian, Pre-Raphaelite & British Impressionist Art

|
London