From Bouguereau’s Studio to Manhattan: How to Ship a Monumental Masterpiece

New York | 14 May

When William Bouguereau unveiled La Jeunesse de Bacchus (The Youth of Bacchus) at the 1884 Paris Salon, he had something to prove. Impressionism and the 19th century avant-garde was taking the art world by storm, and Bouguereau wanted to reaffirm the grandeur and dominance of French academic art. Over the course of three years he meticulously painted The Youth of Bacchus, an immense testament to his skill and conviction as an artist. The work has hung in Bouguereau’s Paris studio since it was completed in 1884, and has previously only left only three times for exhibition. Now, the painting comes to New York, to be offered by the direct descendants of Bouguereau in Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale. But exactly how does one ship a 20 foot, 135 year old painting mounted within a 1,300 pound frame? In this episode of Expert Voices, Pascale Pavageau, Sotheby’s Parisian Head of 19th Century Paintings, supervises the transport of this monumental masterpiece using an expert team of art restorers, handlers, and historians. (14 May|New York)

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