Dupré, Louis.Dupré, Louis. Armenian "un Arménien" Paris "Imprimerie de Dondey-Dupré, Rue St Louis, No 46, Au Marais." 1825-37
Coloured lithograph of an Armenian Gentleman from Louis Dupré's " Voyage â Athènes et â Constantinople...". Original hand colour; verso blank; blind stamp of Dupré as issued. The image shows an Armenian gentleman, standing with a view Agia Sophia in Constantinople, behind.
Dupré spent three months he was in Constantinople. In that time, he was introduced to several rich Armenians—by his host, M. Jouannin, a dragoman of the French Embassy. Dupré was particularly interested in the costume, not only of the Armenian whom he drew, but also of everybody else he met throughout the six months. Almost every time that he met someone new, Dupré took great pains to describe just what type of fabric, in what color, they were wearing. Most of Dupré's attention, in fact, is focused on the clothing rather than the figure of the Armenian. The fine fur of the hat's richness is echoed and enhanced by the fur scarf the Armenian wears around his neck. Fine lines of red, yellow, and blue, placed closely together, mimic the striped material of the costume, the color of which is enhanced by the bright red trousers that scarcely reveal themselves underneath the robes, as well as the Armenian's yellow shoes. Bright colour, slight discolouration to sky; light toning and spotting to entire page; darker rustspot with small hole at centre, to right edge of image above plant; wormhole to right blank margin.
Louis Dupré [1789-1837].
A pupil of Jacques-Louis David in Paris, Louis Dupré became resident in Rome and was appointed official painter to the prince Jerome Bonaparte, in 1811.
In 1819, Louis Dupré took a six-month tour of Greece and Turkey, accompanied by three affluent English gentlemen, Messrs Hyett, Vivian, and Hay. He was received by the French consul Fauvel in Athens and introduced into Greek society allowing him to make his paintings of important personalities of the time, both in Athens and in Joannina where he portayed Ali Pascha, his family and attendants. He continued to Thessaly and from there he sailed to Constantinople, where he made the acquaintance of Prince Michael Soutzo of Moldavia with whom he returned to Italy via Romania. Upon arriving in Constantinople his companions left quickly, frightened by an outbreak of the plague. Dupré, however, remained and completed a series of watercolors. Nevertheless, the Englishmen funded Dupré's entire trip in exchange for these drawings, of which the artist also made duplicates that he exhibited at the Salon of 1824. His work " Voyage â Athènes et â Constantinople"was published in 10 livraisons, in Paris in 1825 through to 1837, consisting of 40 lithographs: portraits, costumes and views of Athenian antiquities, based upon these drawings. [Colnaghi of London pirated 2 of the portraits of Ali Pascha and published them before Dupré.]
The work became synonymous with the Greek War of Independence. The image of Mitropolos, holding the Greek standard symbolizes the Greek victory.
Louis Dupré's" Voyage à Athènes et à Constantinople "is a fascinating example of a travel book so contradictory it begs to be read against the grain. Taking the form of a costume album, it is based on notes and drawings made during the artist's voyage in the Ottoman Empire in 1819. However, the book was produced in France from 1825 to 1839, after the outbreak of Greek insurrections against Ottoman rule in 1821, a popular cause in France. This contextual gap between the moment of travel and the moment of production accounts for the work's contradictory aspects. It is overtly philhellenic, taking the side of the Greek rebels in their conflict with the Ottomans, seeing in the insurgence a revival of ancient ideals and culture. Yet key aspects of the work, particularly its costume images, tug against and undermine its underlying turcophobia and, ultimately, its nationalist, essentialist message of Hellenic regeneration. Dupré's colorful plates are striking and even hauntingly memorable, arresting the viewer's attention. His close-up depiction of boldly posed figures introduces an ambiguity into his travel account that belies its ideological frame. In particular, the costume images, resembling Ottoman-produced costume albums, implicitly celebrate a notion of empire-as-diversity that contradicts Dupré's nationalist text. [Elizabeth Fraser, Ottoman Costume and Inclusive Empire: Louis Dupré in Ottoman Greece .Fashioning Identities symposium, Hunter College, NYC, October 2013]u
Colas 916; Lipperheide 1434; Droulia 901; Navari/ Blackmer: 517; Sotheby's/Blackmer 559. 415 by 277mm (16¼ by 11 inches).
ref: 2662 €1500