Louis Desplaces (1682-1739)

Exquisite 18th c. French engraving by Desplaces after Antoine Watteau, titled Le Printems (purposely spelled without the final letter p). Watteau’s original painting was commissioned for the dining room of the Hôtel Crozat on the rue de Richelieu Paris and was one of a suite of paintings representing the four seasons.

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 The original painting, depicting spring, was destroyed by fire in 1966.  Summer by Marie-Jeanne Renard was engraved by Dubos, Autumn by Etienne Fessard and Winter was engraved by Jean Audran.

Etienne Fessard’s Autumn, L’autonne is part of the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This and other fine engravings by Desplaces may be viewed on the museum’s website.




The great French rococo artist Watteau (1684-1721) was an admirer of Rubens and the Venetian painters. He would lead France into the rococo era with his gorgeous dream-like paintings depicting poetic, almost magical figures in lush landscapes that are rich in tone and texture. His figures are like lyrical dancers and actors who bring to life stories that have not yet been told. The viewer knows that these stories will lead them to a place of harmony and sublime beauty.

The fluid and sensual lines of Watteau’s chalk drawings were so exquisite that art writers coined the term ‘painted drawings’ to describe them. Sadly, his brilliant career was shortened by health issues which led to an untimely death.

Upon his passing his dear friend Jean de Jullienne, the famed art collector who was the Director of the Gobelins, took it upon himself to hire the finest engravers in France to engrave his oeuvre of paintings and drawings, and thus maintain his legacy. An amazingly ambitious and successful undertaking, it became known as the Recueil Jullienne, the Jullienne Collection. One of the engravers hired for this project was a very young François Boucher, the same Boucher who would lead the next generation of artists into the height of Rococo, a term with which his name would become synonymous. How exciting it is to imagine a young François Boucher exposed to works of such beauty and perfection. The impact of engraving these masterpieces must have been both inspiring and life changing.


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Andrea Fisher Design

Andrea Fisher Design