Presented as an allegorical figure of philosophy, a woman slumbers among the traditional trappings of a scholar’s study: a writing desk with feather pen, piles of books, and a celestial globe. The model was Anne-Gabrielle Babuti, wife of Jean-Baptiste Greuze, who prepared the original drawing for Moreau to replicate. Contracts with printmakers show that Anne-Gabrielle actively participated in the production of her husband’s work for the print market. Although she appears mild here, Anne-Gabrielle had a reputation for being greedy and promiscuous. Greuze filed for divorce when it became legal in 1793, claiming that his wife “carried adultery to the point of shamelessness, cynicism to the point of unimaginable insolence.”
Madame Greuze Asleep
Jean-Michel the Younger Moreau, Jean-Baptiste Greuze
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