Three Young Artists in a Studio
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Louis-Léopold Boilly
French, about 1820
Black chalk with white chalk heightening and stumping on beige paper.
11 3/4 x 14 3/8 in.

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Louis-Léopold Boilly's depiction of three artists in a studio conveys the serious and dignified role that he ascribed to the profession. Boilly's harmonious use of black-and-white chalk on beige paper further underscores the subject's sobriety. The three fashionably dressed men, with their tousled hair and intense expressions, confront the viewer with a sense of their fierce commitment to their metier and to each other. In Boilly's numerous variations on this theme, artists are shown in their studios, engaged in discussion with fellow-artists and surrounded by the fruits of their labors. It is likely that Boilly's three sons, all of whom became artists, were the models for this sheet.