Posts Tagged ‘portrait’

Miniature portraits: Jane Austen’s sentimental favourites

I mentioned yesterday the remarkable exhibition Miniatures from the Time of Marie Antoinette at the Philip Mould Gallery. Certainly Marie Antoinette and her brother Emperor Joseph II are represented there, but the vast majority of the sitters in the collection are unknown ladies and gentlemen. Why? Because, unlike grand portraits meant to be displayed in the […]



Queen Victoria’s journals available online

“In this the year of my Diamond Jubilee,” writes Queen Elizabeth II, “I am delighted to be able to present, for the first time, the complete on-line collection of Queen Victoria’s journals from the Royal Archives. These diaries cover the period from Queen Victoria’s childhood days to her Accession to the Throne, marriage to Prince […]



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 […]



Vigee Lebrun Caroline Bonaparte Madame Murat

Painting Caroline Bonaparte’s portrait, by Madame Vigée-Lebrun

Louise-Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun is best remembered today for being Marie-Antoinette’s favorite portraitist. In fact her career went on for decades, with unabated success, after she left France in October 1789, at the very beginning of the French Revolution. For years Madame Lebrun traveled to Italy, Germany, England and Russia, where she enjoyed the patronage of the […]



Eugenie Holding Louis Napoleon Winterhalter

Marie-Antoinette and Eugénie: the Queen and the Empress

Empress Eugénie felt a deep connection between her own destiny and that of Marie-Antoinette. Eugénie’ father was a Spanish grandee. Her maternal ancestry was less aristocratic: her maternal grandfather was a Scottish wine merchant who had settled in Malaga, in Southern Spain. Her mother, the Countess de Montijo, traveled to France and England after her […]



Madame Sophie Perin Salbreux

“La Petite Reine” is not Marie-Antoinette

Don’t feel bad if you believed otherwise: I did too, along with many curators and art historians. Of course I thought the face was rounder than in most of Marie-Antoinette’s portraits, the nose pointy instead of aquiline. The expression was not quite right either, lacking in boldness and character. But the Queen herself complained that […]