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Le Berger content (copy 1)
Entered June 2016; revised September 2016

 

copy1

Paris, Musée du Louvre, M.I. 1131, on deposit at the Hôtel Matignon

Oil on canvas

56 x 46 cm

 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES

Joueur de flûte

Pastorale

Pastorale. Berger et bergère

 

PROVENANCE

Paris, collection of Dr. Louis La Caze (1798-1869; physician); inventory of his estate, October 11-November 2, 1869, item 442: "[Watteau] Berger et bergère. Un berger et une bergère sont assis au pied d’un tertre surmonté d’un group d’arbres. Le berger vu de dos joue de la flûte et la bergère l’écoute attentivement. Elle est coiffée d’un chapeau de paille orné de rubans rouges et vêtue d’un corsage rouge à larges manches et d’une jupe d’étoffe jaune. Au premier plan une mare au bord de laquelle un mouton est couché. Un chien place sur la droite au troisième plan semble prêter attention aux accents de la musique. L’esquisse gravée se trouve à la bibliothèque. Hauteur cinquante-cinq centimetres. Largeur quarante-cinq centimetres.”

Donated to the Louvre in 1869.

 

EXHIBITIONS

Paris, Louvre, Copies, répliques, pastiches (1973), cat. 85 (by Norblin de La Gourdaine?, Pastorale,

Musée du Louvre).

 

SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY

Paris, Louvre, Tableaux legués par M. La Caze (1871), cat. 270.

Zimmermann, Watteau (1912), pl. 147.

Brière, Louvre, catalogue de peintures (1924), cat. 992.

Réau, “Watteau” (1928), under cat. 269.

Adhémar, Watteau (1950), under cat. 267.

Macchia and Montagni, L’opera completa di Watteau (1968), under cat. 39A.

Le Coat, "Watteau et l'imaginaire social" (1984), 182.

Compin and Roquebert, Catalogue sommaire (1986), 5: 312.

Faroult and Eloy, La Collection La Caze CD-ROM (2007), 698-99.

 

REMARKS

When this picture was in the La Caze collection, it was believed to be by Watteau. That attribution remained in place for almost a century, including Brière’s catalogue of 1924. Brière and then Réau then called the work a sketch (“une esquisse”) yet Watteau did not normally paint sketches. Some have thought the painting postdated Watteau’s lifetime, and Adhémar went so far as to attribute it to none other than Fragonard. That opinion is repeated by Macchia and Montagni, as well as by Le Coat. More recently, a possible attribution to Jean Pierre Norblin de La Gourdaine (1745-1830) has been voiced.

Adhémar claimed that the Louvre painting first appeared at an anonymous sale, presumably in Paris, on February 6, 1812, lot 15. However, it has not been possible to find such an auction catalogue, but Adhémar often erred in citing sale data. Although Macchia and Montagni generally repeated Adhémar’s text, in this instance they claimed the sale took place in 1852, but did not cite a month or day, making it impossible to verify their assertion.

 

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Le Berger content (copy 2)
Entered June 2016; revised September 2016

 


Whereabouts unknown

Medium unknown

Measurements unknown

 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES

 Une berge et une berger et une berge

 

PROVENANCE

Paris, collection of sieur de Lalande; inventory of his estate, Oct. 21, 1747: “Deux tableaux, dont l’un représente une berge de Vateaux, et un berger et une berge; et l’autre représentant l’heureux momens, trouvez bon et conforme.”

 

SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY

Wildenstein, Rapports (1921), cols. 44-45.

Réau, “Watteau” (1928), under cat. 269.

Adhémar, Watteau (1950), under cat. 267.

Macchia and Montagni, L’opera completa di Watteau (1968), under cat. 39A.

 

REMARKS

An inventory of the estate of sieur de Lalande, dated October 21, 1747, lists an ensemble of eleven painted copies after Watteau engravings painted by Charles André Tramblin. Among them, the experts Jacques Pingat and Pierre Jacques Gasselin recorded a copy after Le Berger content. Although they deformed the title of the picture so that it reads as though there were three shepherds and shepherdesses, the composition must have followed Le Berger content since, like the Crépy engraving, it was paired with a copy after L’Heureux moment.

 

 

 

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