Object Details




Théodore Géricault (French, 1791 - 1824)






Pencil on paper

Object Number:



15.2 × 10.6 cm (6 × 4 3/16 in.)

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Théodore Géricault carried this little book around in his pocket for more than two years, from 1812 to 1814. He used it to make rapid sketches from life and to copy motifs from Old Master paintings and ancient sculpture, as well as to note ideas for future projects. The sketchbook clearly illustrates his broad range of interests, though it focuses on subjects such as horses and lions, which interested Géricault throughout his career.

After Géricault's early death at the age of thirty-two in 1824, the contents of his studio, including thirty-three sketchbooks, were sold at auction. Most of these sketchbooks were later taken apart, and their individual pages have scattered among various private and public collections. Only six remain intact today. The Getty Museum's sketchbook is nearly complete, with a few detached single sheets showing that a few pages were cut or torn out at some point.

Related Works
November 2-4, 1824

Hotel Buillion (Paris), lot 42 (Posthumous sale of the artist's collection)



December 16-17, 1889

Hôtel Drouot, lot 211


Private Collection (France)

June 22, 1991

Christie's (Monaco) S.A.M., lot 41


Private Collection (Paris)

The Compositional Drawing from the 16th to the 19th Century (April 16 to June 30, 1996)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), April 16 to June 30, 1996
Defining Modernity: European Drawings 1800-1900 (June 5 to September 9, 2007)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), June 5 to September 9, 2007
Capturing Nature's Beauty: Three Centuries of French Landscapes (July 28 to November 1, 2009) (Page 22)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), July 28 to November 1, 2009