Feb 25, 2008

Self-Portrait in Rome

Self-Portrait in Rome


Horace Vernet

(French, 1789–1863)

Oil on fabric

Framed: 78.5 x 67 x 8 cm (30 7/8 x 26 3/8 x 3 1/8 in.); Unframed: 65 x 54.2 cm (25 9/16 x 21 5/16 in.)

Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund 1977.171


Vernet stands before the Villa Medici, seat of the French Academy in Rome, where he was director from 1829 to 1835. The palette, brushes, and maulstick on the stepladder hint at his talent for painting large canvases. The artist's sideward glance, disheveled hair, and burning cigarette lend him a romantic aura. The recipient of numerous commissions for military paintings, Vernet was patronized by Jérôme Bonaparte (the youngest brother of Napoleon) and later taught at the École des Beaux-Arts.

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