View Full Version : Masters of Pastels-Special Edition-July 2005-Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin

A Few Pigments
06-30-2005, 03:11 AM
I could only find one pastel on the internet for Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin, so it thought I’d give Chardin’s single pastel a thread by it’s self.

The proper Masters of Pastels thread for July 2005 can be found here: Masters of Pastels-July 2005- Jean-Étienne Liotard http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?p=3658752#post3658752

It’s time to vote for the Masters we will explore for the next three months. This link will take you to that thread http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=279674

1699-1779, Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin, French Rococo Era Painter.
Artcyclopedia: http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artist...ste-simeon.html

Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin, (1699-1779)
French Rococo Era Painter,
Relationships: Chardin's students included Jean-Honore Fragonard http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/fragonard_jean-honore.html
Subject matter: Specializes in Still Life.

Rococo Art http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/rococo.html
Europe, 1715 to 1774

The Rococo style succeeded Baroque Art in Europe. It was centered in France, and is generally associated with the reign of King Louis XV (1715-1774). It is a light, elaborate and decorative style of art.

Quintessentially Rococo artists include;
Watteau http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/watteau_jean-antoine.html
Fragonard http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/fragonard_jean-honore.html
François Boucher http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/boucher_francois.html
Tiepolo http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/tiepolo_giovanni_battista.html

Rococo was eventually replaced by Neoclassicism http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/neoclassicism.html , which was the popular style of the American and French revolutions.

Chardin, Jean-Baptiste-Siméon (1699-1779) http://chardin.netfirms.com/
Largely self taught and strongly influenced by 17th century low country masters such as Metsu and de Hooch, Chardin became one of the greatest of the 18th century painters. Chardin was a lover of Still Life and Simple Subjects, subdued colors and soft lighting. Later in life, as his eyesight began to fail, he turned to pastels which, whilst not appreciated then, are now highly valued.

Jean-Siméon Chardin http://www.getty.edu/art/collections/bio/a539-1.html
Born 1699, Died 1779
Painter, Draftsman

Unlike François Boucher, with whom he shared many patrons, Jean-Siméon Chardin was not interested in the superficial; it was the very essence of objects and the underlying humanity of his figures that he evoked with tiny slabs of saturated paint. "We use colors," said Chardin, "but we paint with our feelings."

A Parisian carpenter's son, Chardin learned from a modest artist and began by painting signposts for tradesmen and details in other artists' works. His work was "discovered" in 1728 by Nicolas de Largillière at an outdoor show, and Chardin was immediately admitted for membership in the Académie Royale. Early in his career, Chardin painted primarily still lifes; he turned to genre painting from 1733 to 1751, then created still lifes again after 1751. As his sight dimmed, he took up pastels, with which he made beautiful portraits. For most of his life, Chardin's entries in the Salon exhibitions were outstandingly successful. He helped to elevate still life to a respected category of painting, and his name remains inextricably associated with it. Novelist Marcel Proust wrote, "We have learned from Chardin that a pear is as living as a woman, that an ordinary piece of pottery is as beautiful as a precious stone."

Biography http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/bio/c/chardin/biograph.html

French painter of still lifes and domestic scenes remarkable for their intimate realism and tranquil atmosphere and the luminous quality of their paint. For his still lifes he chose humble objects (Le Buffet, 1728), and for his genre paintings modest events (Dame cachetant une lettre [1733; Lady Sealing a Letter]). He also executed some fine portraits, especially the pastels of his last years. He was nominated to the Royal Academy of Painting in 1728.

Born in Paris, Chardin never really left his native quarter of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Little is known about his training, although he worked for a time with the artists Pierre-Jacques Cazes and Noël-Nicolas Coypel. In 1724 he was admitted to the Academy of Saint Luc. His true career, however, did not begin until 1728 when, thanks to the portrait painter Nicolas de Largillière (1656-1746), he became a member of the Royal Academy of Painting, to which he offered La Raie (The Skate) and Le Buffet, both now at the Louvre Museum.

Although not yet established, he was beginning to gain a reputation. In 1731 he married Marguerite Saintard, and two years later the first of his figure paintings appeared, Dame cachetant une lettre. From then on Chardin alternated between paintings of la vie silencieuse (the silent life) or scenes of family life such as Le Bénédicité (The Grace) and half-figure paintings of young men and women concentrating on their work or play, such as Le Jeune dessinateur (Young Man Drawing) and L'Enfant au toton (Child with Top, Louvre). The artist repeated his subject matter, and there are often several original versions of the same composition. Chardin's wife died in 1735, and the estate inventory drawn up after her death reveals a certain affluence, suggesting that by this time Chardin had become a successful painter.

In 1740 he was presented to Louis XV, to whom he offered La Mère laborieuse (Mother Working) and Le Bénédicité. Four years later, he married Marguerite Pouget, whom he was to immortalize 30 years later in a pastel. These were the years when Chardin was at the height of his fame. Louis XV, for example, paid 1,500 livres for La Serinette (The Bird-Organ). Chardin continued to rise steadily on the rungs of the traditional academic career. His colleagues at the academy entrusted him, first unofficially (1755), then officially (1761), with the hanging of the paintings in the Salon (official exhibition of the academy), which had been held regularly every two years since 1737 and in which Chardin had participated faithfully. It was in the exercise of his official duties that he met the encyclopaedist and philosopher Denis Diderot, who would devote some of his finest pages of art criticism to Chardin, the "grand magicien" that he admired so much.

He was nearer to the feeling of meditative quiet that animates the rustic scenes of the 17th-century French master Louis Le Nain than to the spirit of light and superficial brilliance seen in the work of many of his contemporaries. His carefully constructed still lifes do not bulge with appetizing foods but are concerned with the objects themselves and with the treatment of light. In his genre scenes he does not seek his models among the peasantry as his predecessors did; he paints the petty bourgeoisie of Paris. But manners have been softened, and his models seem to be far removed from Le Nain's austere peasants. The housewives of Chardin are simply but neatly dressed and the same cleanliness is visible in the houses where they live. Everywhere a sort of intimacy and good fellowship constitute the charm of these modestly scaled pictures of domestic life that are akin in feeling and format to the works of Jan Vermeer.

Despite the triumphs of his early and middle life, Chardin's last years were clouded, both in his private life and in his career. His only son, Pierre-Jean, who had received the Grand Prix (prize to study art in Rome) of the academy in 1754, committed suicide in Venice in 1767. And then too, the public's taste had changed. The new director of the academy, the all-powerful Jean-Baptiste-Marie Pierre, in his desire to restore historical painting to the first rank, humiliated the old artist by reducing his pension and gradually divesting him of his duties at the academy. Furthermore, Chardin's sight was failing. He tried his hand at drawing with pastels. It was a new medium for him and less taxing on his eyes. Those pastels, most of which are in the Louvre Museum, are highly thought of in the 20th century, but that was not the case in Chardin's own time. In fact, he lived out the remainder of his life in almost total obscurity, his work meeting with indifference.

It was not until the middle of the 19th century that he was rediscovered by a handful of French critics, including the brothers Edmond and Jules de Goncourt, and collectors (the Lavalard brothers, for example, who donated their collection of Chardins to the Museum of Picardy in Amiens). Especially noteworthy is the LaCaze Collection donated to the Louvre in 1869. Today Chardin is considered the greatest still-life painter of the 18th century, and his canvases are coveted by the world's most distinguished museums and collections.

Art Renewal Center: Page: 1 http://www.artrenewal.org/asp/database/art.asp?aid=2633#
c. 1771, Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin, Self-Portrait in Spectacles, Rococo, pastel on blue-gray paper over canvas, 16 x 13 inches (40.7 x 32.5 cm), Musée du Louvre, Paris




Below is a portrait of Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin painted by Maurice-Quentin Delatour.

Le peintre Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin http://www.insecula.com/us/oeuvre/O0009805.html
Material : Pastel on grey paper
Date : near 1761
Artist : Maurice-Quentin Delatour
Model : Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin
Place : Louvre Museum
Pastels du XVIIIème siècle
Sully Wing - Second floor - Section 45
Area related : Paris (France)
Acquisition : Saisie révolutionnaire (1793)


07-02-2005, 09:10 PM
Thank you for doing so much research to let us all know so much information on the great artists!

A Few Pigments
07-02-2005, 10:28 PM
Thank you purples. Actually all of this benefits me too. I’m really enjoying learning about the history of pastels and about how so many artists who’s primary medium was something else, thought of pastels as a very important medium in their work. Pastels seem to be the most versatile and expressive medium in art. I’m glad you’re enjoying these threads.

A Few Pigments
07-12-2005, 06:08 PM
I found another pastel by Chardin on the web. It’s believed he did this self-portrait just a few weeks before he died.
Insecula: http://www.insecula.com/oeuvre/O0009817.html
Jean-Siméon Chardin
Autoportrait au chevalet
Elément 1 sur 8
Peinture française
Dessin (Autoportrait)
Ecole française - Rococo
Matériaux : Pastel sur papier bleu
Date : vers 1779
Artiste : Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin
Modèle : Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin
Lieu : Musée du Louvre
Pastels du XVIIIème siècle
Aile Sully - Deuxième étage - Section 45
Région en relation : Paris (France)
Acquisition : Département des Arts graphiques




A Few Pigments
07-16-2005, 07:34 PM
I decided to try doing a pastel of the first self-portrait by Chardin in post one in this thread. I couldn’t find a web site that states the size of the original painting so I used my paint program to scale up a working size from the digital image.

16 x 20 3/8 inches on Canson mi-teintes paper.


A Few Pigments
07-20-2005, 04:35 PM

A Few Pigments
07-26-2005, 01:37 AM
This is my progress so far. I’m trying to just use strokes instead of blending with my fingers. Below is a scan of the colours in student pastels I’m using for this painting. C&C welcome.



A Few Pigments
08-07-2005, 11:34 PM
I think I have his face about done and the hat is about done. I hope I can get this finished in just two more sessions. C & C welcome.