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Picturing a World

Study for a portrait

I spent time looking at society portraits by Carolus-Duran in order to visualize my invented portrait of Cornelia Renick as well as to enliven the photograph of his portrait of Countess V—. Duran’s enjoyment of the rich fabric he preferred for his subjects is visible in this study for a portrait of his daughter, Mme. Ernest Feydeau, and I incorporated it into the gold of Cornelia’s gown. I’ve chosen to show this image instead of a finished portrait because it also illustrates the quick, loose brushwork that Jeanette was familiar with in the context of preparatory sketches and studies. It comes as a shock to her to see similar work on display for the public at the 4th Impressionist exhibition. Coming up next: Impressionism!

Meanwhile, to see both the finished portrait of Mme. Feydeau and the portrait of Countess Vandal in color, click here.

And for an actual golden dress worn by the subject of one of Duran’s paintings, click here.
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