Looking the quintessential French Revolutionary gentleman, one almost wonders if his image was used for the costumes in Les Miserable, doesn't one? Beautifully expressive eyes and a look of passion, perhaps this is truly one of the men whose fishwoman wife stormed Versailles and started the final unraveling of the reign of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette (yes, it was actually the strong fish-cutter women from the docks who took up their filet blades and farmer's tools en route and laid waste to the Palace). Youthful face and powdered hair to grey, the portrait is just splendidly accomplished. Painted on thin natural wafer that is still backed by an attached cover paper or perhaps very thin vellum, and in the orignal frame, he has withstood more than 200 years with only the slight loss of a little paint on his coat. Isn't that mustard shirt just too too French, by the way? And isn't he just spectacular!
Very good to excellent for age and type, he has just the very lightest loss of paint (we think gouache in his case rather than watercolor) on his coat. The frame has protected him very well, and the thin wafer has no chips or cracks or hairlines, no warping. The frame is a double sided locket style that might have once held plaited locks of his hair. Both glass panels are in place and are convex and original, but the one on backside has had something on the surface which we were not able to remove in full. It is surface only, as we did remove some. But we tried paint thinner, paint remover, and it remains somewhat there. I suspect it is something like superglue but I haven't any superglue solvent here. In any case, it is not etched into the glass, and does look like something one could get off. That said, it's our only flaw to note on the frame. A superb painting.
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