La sultane favorite
1879 - 1960
La sultane favorite
signed c. paul-baudry (lower left)
oil on canvas
canvas: 51¼ by 61⅛ in,; 130.2 by 155.3 cm
framed: 55¾ by 65 in.; 141.6 by 165.1 cm
The canvas is not lined and is slightly loose on its stretcher. The paint surface is stable and in good overall condition. Faint stretcher bar impressions horizontally across the figure's chest and vertically through her right leg up through the neck of the instrument. There is an approximately 6 by 4 inch rectangular patch on the reverse corresponding to a repair left of the figure's shoulder. Under UV light, the figure has been selectively cleaned; a circa 1 inch by 1 inch round area of retouching is visible corresponding to the aforementioned repair; two isolated lines of retouching at upper center; small scattered areas of retouching in the background at right.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.
Catalogue illustré du Salon 1914, Paris 1914, no. 1559, p. 173, illustrated.
La sultane favorite was exhibited at the Salon of 1914 by Cécile Paul-Baudry, a student of William Bouguereau and the eldest daughter of the celebrated Academic painter Paul-Jacques-Aimé Baudry. This arresting composition centers on a beautiful woman in an atmospheric interior dressed in an elaborate costume and draped in a delicate gauzy veil. The painting was illustrated in the Salon catalogue and the painter's address was listed as 19 avenue de Tourville in Paris.
The present painting was a fitting addition to enter the collection of the well-known dancer, choreographer, and teacher, Serena Wilson (1933-2007), who helped popularize the genre of belly dancing throughout the United States. A Bronx native, Serena first fell in love with the art form in the 1950s, honing her skills by performing at famed clubs throughout New York City, including the Egyptian Gardens. Serena’s Studios, which she opened in the 1960s, survives today along with The Serena Belly Dance Museum, which houses a unique collection of costumes and dance-related memorabilia that celebrates her long and illustrious career.