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Marie Antoinette Engaged in Netting

Water colour and pastel of the 7-year old Marie-Antoinette, by Jean-Étienne Liotard Water colour and pastel of the 7-year old Marie-Antoinette, by Jean-Étienne Liotard Copyright Cabinet d'arts graphiques des Musées d'art et d'histoire, Genève, Propriété de la Confédération Suisse, Fondation Gottfried Keller, Berne N° d'inventaire : 1947-0042.

A water colour and pastel by the Swiss-French artist, Jean-Étienne Liotard (1702-1789) and dated AD 1762, shows the seven-year old Marie Antoinette of Austria (1755-1793) engaged in netting. She is holding a netting shuttle in her right hand.

Marie Antoinette, born Archduchess of Austria and officially named Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna, was the fifteenth child of Empress Maria Theresa (1717-1780) and Francis I (1708-1765), the Holy Roman Emperor. She became the Dauphine of France in 1770 when she married Louis-Auguste, and she became Queen of France and Navarre on 10th May 1773 when her husband ascended the French throne as Louis XVI. She was executed by guillotine on 16th October 1793.

The portrait measures 31.1 x 24.9 cm. The painter, Liotard, was nicknamed 'The Turk', for his wearing Oriental clothing following his trip to the Middle East. He settled for some time in The Netherlands in 1755, first in Delft. A year later in Amsterdam he married Marie Fargues, a descendant of a French Huguenot (like Liotard himself). He was fascinated with Dutch masters, and collected some sixty Dutch paintings.

For Liotard's drawing of his wife, in Oriental/Turkish dress, see a painting now in the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. Click here.

See also the TRC Needle's entry on Liotard's portrait of Maria Amalia, Marie Antoinette's sister.

Musées d'art et d'histoire, Genève, online catalogue (retrieved 17th December 2016).

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Last modified on Monday, 26 June 2017 13:58