Nov 8, 2010

Cupid and Psyche

Cupid and Psyche


Jacques-Louis David

(French, 1748–1825)

Gray wash and pen and black ink with white paint and traces of black chalk

Support: Laid paper

Sheet: 16.7 x 22.4 cm (6 9/16 x 8 13/16 in.)

Andrew R. and Martha Holden Jennings Fund 2002.91


Did you know?

Scholars believe that this drawing was given by Jacques-Louis David to his pupil, the Comte de Forbin, to thank him for his continual devotion.


This drawing belongs to a group of preparatory studies for Jacques-Louis David's painting Cupid and Psyche, also in the Cleveland Museum of Art's collection. Here, David integrated looser charcoal sketches into a finished work in which his composition was fully established. Only minor details, such as Cupid's facial expression, were ultimately changed. In layers of diluted gray wash and outlines of black ink, David evoked the precise appearance of his final canvas using monochromatic media.

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