Many of François Boucher's decorative designs were published as prints sometimes executed by the painter, etcher, and publisher-dealer Gabriel Huquier. Thus, both these artists played significant roles in the development and spread of the elaborate Rococo style.
The First Guard-depicting a rustic band of young and old men who have temporarily shed their weapons to concentrate on a game of dice-typifies the sort of picturesque genre scene at which Boucher excelled. The artist displays his ingenuity by composing a pleasing arrangement of artfully posed figures and carefully placed objects.
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