View 1 of Lot 61. A seated gladiator seen in profile.
View 1 of Lot 61. A seated gladiator seen in profile.
61

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

A seated gladiator seen in profile

Estimate:

25,000 - 35,000 USD

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

A seated gladiator seen in profile

A seated gladiator seen in profile

Estimate:

25,000 - 35,000 USD

Lot sold:

47,880

USD

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

Grasse 1732 - 1806 Paris

A seated gladiator seen in profile


Red chalk

304 by 216 mm; 12 by 8 ½ in

M. Roland Michel, Rome, 1760-1770, Fragonard, Hubert Robert et leurs amis, Galerie Cailleux, Paris 1983, under no. 17;
M.-A. Dupuy-Vachey, in La tentation du dessin, une collection particulière, exhib. cat., Vevey, Musée Jenisch, 2012, p. 154, reproduced fig. 1 

This handsome example of Fragonard's early ability to draw from the model highlights the skills that all aspiring artists had to master, in accordance with the rigid and codified program of instruction at the French academy. As Marie-Anne Dupuy-Vachey described, some of the first drawings that can be attributed to Fragonard show the mark of his years of apprenticeship, spent from 1752 to 1756 at the Ecole des Elèves Protégés under the authority of Carle Van Loo, and then, from 1756 to 1761, at the Académie de France in Rome, directed by Charles Joseph Natoire.'1This very accomplished study must date from the artist's Roman period; Dupuy-Vachey has suggested a dating to circa 1761 (see Literature). The figure is flooded with light and Fragonard brilliantly defines the space around the seated gladiator with a very controlled use of parallel lines in red chalk, to emphasize the volumes and contours of his body.  


We are grateful to Marie-Anne Dupuy-Vachey for confirming the attribution, having seen the drawing in the original.


1. M.-A. Dupuy-Vachey, in Fragonard. Drawing Triumphant, exhib. cat. New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2016-2017, p. 78