Oil on canvas: 96.5 x 132.4 cm / 8 x 52 1/8 in
Signed and dated '1880' lower right; original preparer's stencil on the reverse
Painter of history, allegorical subjects and genre scenes; watercolourist, pastellist, engraver, draughtsman and illustrator. Adrien Moreau was born on April 18, 1943 in Troyes and deceased on February 22, 1906 in Paris. A pupil of Isidore Pils, he exhibited at the Paris Salon from 1868 and later with the Société des Artistes Français. He was awarded a second class medal in 1876 and silver medals at the Expositions Universellles of 1889 and 1900. He was made a Chevalier in the Légion d’honneur in 1892. Moreau illustrated Voltaire’s “Candide” and Emile Moreau’s “The Secret of Saint Louis” in 1899. In his review of the Paris Salon of 1880, an anonymous art critic wrote: “Undoubtedly, there is a lot of talent in this canvas: the white and pink satins combine their shimmering reflections in a color of a charming freshness, very soft, although flickering. But the main point of interest in these conventional figures in fact lies in their adornment; stripped from their costume, no one would dare to look at them (…) What luxurious accoutrements! What seductive hairstyles! What provocative boots!” In a different review, another critic considered Le Centenaire a “worthy example of the artist’s spiritual talent,” and gauged it would win a gold medal.
Provenance: McClees Galleries, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, USA (label on the reverse). Private Estate, Illinois, USA. / Exhibition: Paris Salon, France, May 1880.
Literature: “Le Contemporain: Revue Catholique”, Société d’Économie Charitable, Series 3, Vol. 20, Paris 1880, p. 169. / A.C., “La Champagne et la Brie au Salon de Paris en 1880”, in Revue de Champagne et de Brie: Histoire, Biographie, Archéologie, Documents Inédits, Bibliographie, Beaux-Arts, Henri Menu, Paris 1880-1881, Vol. 9, 5th Year, 1st Semester, p. 90. / George Lafenestre, “Le Livre d’Or du Salon de Peinture et de Sculpture”, Librarie des Bibliophiles, Paris 1880, p. 10.
Troyes (Aube) 1843 - Paris 1906
Carcassonne - Nantes - Troyes
E. Bénézit, "Dictionary of Artists", Parijs 2006, Vol. 9, p. 1274-1275.