This exquisite 18th-century engraving by Jacques-Philippe Le Bas (1707-1783) is after a portrait by Dutch artist Gerard Metsu (1629-1667).
It formed part of Jean Baptiste Pierre Le Brun’s 'Galerie des Peintres Flamands, Hollandais et Allemands; Ouvrage enrichi de Deux Cent Planches graves d'apres les meilleurs Tableaux de ces Maitres'.
Jean Baptiste Pierre Le Brun is considered one of the most influential art dealers in European history. His publication, Galerie des Peintres Flamands etc, illuminated the darkened corners of Dutch and Flemish art while also building acclaim for known luminaries, such as Gerard Metsu. Via the ‘Galerie’, Le Brun mentions Vermeer for the first time and sets the great Dutch master on a path to notoriety. He also unearthed several of Rembrandt’s followers, such as Ferdinand Bol, Govaert Flinck and Gerrit Dou.
Quite why he published the ‘Galerie’ is a topic of debate - some say he sought historical prominence for the eminent Northern masters, otherwise lost to time. Whereas others view his publication as a means to advertise his commercial operations. He was a dealer, after all.
Either way, Le Brun remains an important cog in the development of the art trade in continental Europe. And this engraving, after a work by Gerard Metsu, is a good example from his extraordinary publication.
Signed in the plate and held within a contemporary glazed frame.
Medium: Engraving on hand-laid paper
Overall size: 16” x 19” / 41cm x 49cm
Year of creation: c. 1792
Condition: Artwork presents well.
Jacques-Philippe Le Bas
Jacques-Philippe Le Bas trained under Antoine Hérisset and his works are held in various public collections including the Met Museum, British Museum and Royal Academy.
Learn more about Jacques-Philippe Le Bas in our directory.