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Ary Scheffer (1795-1858) "Portrait of a military "medicine en chef", oil on canvas, 1849
FINAL DISCOUNT PRICE= 3500 USD
( for EUR price see date rate )
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An interesting portrait of an elderly French military "medicine en chef" (chief-physician).
Besides wearing an identifiable uniform, he is shown resting his hand on "Gazette Medical" spread atop his desk. Another important detail not to be overlooked is (hanging on the wall behind him) a framed engraving with a detectable title "Siege du Torgau. 1813". This detail is not accidental to the composition: with almost 100% likelihood, it is the evidence of "our" doctor's presence in besieged fortress Torgau (the siege took place 35 years prior to the painting's execution).
Occupied in May of 1813 and upheld by troops of Napoleonic general comte de Narbonne for months, Saxonian fortress Torgau
was in the end unable to withhold the Prussian siege. As the result, the French garrison was forced to capitulate in the end of the same (1813) year.
Our image nr.11 shows a document discovered on the Web, which lists the whole military personnel of the French garrison. What we see is that (according to records of October 20th 1813) among almost one and a half thousand of assistance (not field) personnel there were 119 "officiers de sante": 14 medics, 61 surgeons, and 44 pharmacists. One of them was "our" (then young) "medicine en chef".
Having at hand a list of French military physicians living in 1849, one could theoretically find this young doctor from 1813 Torgau…
Apart from its date of 1849, the painting also demonstrates a scratched monogram "A.S.", which means it is an original work of very well known Dutch-French artist of the 1st half of the 19th century, Ary Scheffer (our comparison images nr.12-15 fully confirm this statement).
Ary Scheffer (1795 Dordrecht - 1858 Argenteuil) was a member of the well-known artist family in the Netherlands. His father Jean-Baptist Scheffer, his mother Cornelia Scheffer, nee Lamme, and his brother Henry Scheffer, were all well-known painters.
While still a boy, Ary became his parents' pupil. He spent his childhood in the Hague (from 1797) and Amsterdam (1808-1810). In 1812 he became a pupil of P.N. Guerin in Paris. There, he was influenced by his schoolfellows Gericault and Delacroix. In the same year Scheffer debuted at the Parisian Salon. In 1821, with help of the artist Francois Gerard who valued him a great deal, Scheffer got a teaching position with the children of Duke of Orleans. Gradually he established a strong popularity as a sentimental Romantic artist, reflecting the overall trend of that period. Furthermore, as a portraitist Scheffer soon became one of the most favorite artists of the high society, painting portraits of Louis Philipp, Lafayett, Talleyrand, Chopin, Franz Liszt, etc.
Provenance: "Chaudet Antiquites", Paris, 25th July 2013 (via Ebay)
Condition: good; in newer frame
Creation Year: 1849
Measurements: UNFRAMED:43,5x33,5cm/17,1x13,2in FRAMED: 55,0x46,5cm/21,7x18,3in
Object Type: Framed oil painting
Style: 19th century paintings
Technique: oil on canvas
Inscription: monogrammed and dated (scratched): A.S. 1849
Creator: Ary Scheffer
To see other works by this artist click on the name above!
Creator Dates: 1795 Dordrecht-1858 Arenteuil
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