Archive for the ‘Art’ Category


Madame Vigée-Lebrun, Regency England and Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire

Frequent visitors to Versailles and more have become familiar with Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun, one of the most successful painters of her time and Marie-Antoinette’s favorite portraitist. Madame Lebrun left France as early as October 1789, after the royal family relocated, much against their wishes, to the Tuileries. She traveled extensively in search of new patrons, in […]

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Boy blowing bubbles, by Frans van Mieris, and happy Mother’s Day!

It is always a pleasure to look for illustrations for Mother’s Day. This year I hesitated between Rubens, with his portraits of his young wife, Helene Fourment, and their children, and Renoir. But it is this Boy blowing bubbles, by the Dutch painter Frans van Mieris, that caught my attention.

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Queen Victoria’s wedding, or why modern brides wear white

When Jane Austen’s parents were married in 1764, the bride, Cassandra Leigh, wore a red riding habit to the ceremony. Cassandra was not being eccentric or making a fashion statement. Such dress was perfectly appropriate for a young woman from a genteel but not particularly wealthy family marrying a country parson

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May Day greetings, from Queen Victoria

Yes, readers of Versailles and more get their May Day greetings from royalty… See how fortunate you are? The custom of exchanging sprigs of lily-of-the-valley, a French tradition, is also popular in England. See this lovely painting by Winterhalter. The baby in Victoria’s arms in Prince Arthur, her seventh child, and his mother’s indisputed favourite, more […]

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Monet Women in garden

My search for Monet’s great love Camille, a guest post by Stephanie Cowell. And a giveaway!

As promised, Stephanie Cowell‘s guest post! —————————————————- The grave was overgrown, the headstone worn and tumbled when you used to walk through the graveyard of the old church of Vétheuil in search of Monet’s muse and first wife Camille. For a hundred and twenty years, the remains of the beautiful woman who died young had […]

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Marie Antoinette a la rose by Vigee Lebrun

Marie-Antoinette and Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun: the Queen and the painter

Without Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun’s many portraits of Marie-Antoinette, our mental image of the Queen would be different, so iconic have these paintings become. All the more reason to look into the relationship between the two ladies. And what better way to do so than return to Madame Lebrun’s Memoirs? It was in the year 1779, she […]

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Albrecht Durer Lamentation for Christ


There are so many striking images of the Passion of Christ that it is very difficult to choose. Last year I selected the Tenebrae from the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry. This year, I invite you to gaze at the Lamentation for Christ, by that master of the German Renaissance, Albrecht Dürer. Also, […]

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Louise de Keroualle Duchess of Portsmouth Peter Lely

From Louise de Kéroualle to Monet’s waterlilies: a day at the Getty, and things to come

What a gorgeous day it was for a visit to the Getty Center. Sunny skies, clear vistas of the Pacific to the West and the snow-capped San Gabriel Mountains to the East. For the first time I took the guided tour of the extraordinary gardens, where the red, pink and white azalea maze was still […]

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Ingres Comtesse d Haussonville

The Comtesse d’Haussonville is back in New York

Madame d’Haussonville (she was not yet the Comtesse d’Haussonville when this portrait was painted, circa 1842) has returned home after a three-month stay in sunny California, at Pasadena’s Norton Simon Museum. She awaits the pleasure of your company on Wednesday, March 3, at 6 in the evening for a free lecture at The Frick Collection.

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Fragonard Hiver Winter


It is snowing in Auvergen already, but the weather in and around Paris is still mild. So I will nevertheless post this Fragonard, L’hiver (Winter) from the collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. This is an early work (1755) and his manner is still very close to that of Boucher, though there […]

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