Private Collection France
December 15, 1985
Fournier, lot 49
Art Market London
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Jean-Baptiste Oudry (French, 1686 - 1755)
Black and white chalk on tan paper
35.1 × 51.4 cm (13 13/16 × 20 1/4 in.)
Before the total destruction of the gardens of Arcueil, [Jean-Baptiste Oudry] never failed to go and draw there whenever he had a moment's leisure.... One could always find people sketching, and everyone eagerly consulted M. Oudry; in these picturesque pastimes he excelled like an instructor in his class.
Thus wrote Oudry's biographer in the 1800s. Many of Oudry's nearly fifty large-scale park scenes from between 1744 and 1747 depict these gardens of Arcueil, at the Prince de Guise's chateau near Paris, which were destroyed not long after. Oudry's landscape drawings, of which approximately one thousand still exist, combine a love of nature; a free, rapid drawing style; and a sensitivity to the effects of light.
Here Oudry used white chalk sparingly for subtle