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A Young Woman, in an Elaborate Hooped Dress, Standing in a Park



Attributed to Jean-Frédéric Schall (1752-1825)
A Young Woman, in an Elaborate Hooped Dress, Standing in a Park
Watercolour and gouache on laid paper
AGLC 370 @ A.G Leventis Gallery

This is the type of painting that the name of Jean- Frédéric Schall instantly conjures up; somewhat to his detriment, since it obscures the actual variety of his oeuvre (for which, see pp. 106-109), but also because many copies and inferior imitations have been sold under his name. At one time, they were a must for collectors of dix-huitiéme French art, such as the Rothschilds1 or O. Homberg.2 All these are, however, in oil on panel or canvas. A gouache is something rarer. There is, however, no reason why Schall should not have been as competent to work in one medium as in the other, whilst gouache was found particularly appropriate for galant subjects (for example, those by Pierre-Antoine Baudouin [1723- 1769] and Jean-Baptiste Mallet [1759-1835]). One reason for this may have been that, provided it is kept free of damp and not exposed to too much light, gouache can preserve the brilliance of its colour better than oil paintings. Also, the very nature of galant pictures means that they were less likely to be hung openly on walls and thus exposed to too much light.

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