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Carmelite friar, standing
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Carmelite friar, standing

Circa 1715

Jean-Antoine Watteau (1684-1721)

Black and red chalk on laid paper

Width: 23.2 cm; Height: 33.4 cm;

Acquisition (source, method, date)
Seilern, Antoine (Count); bequest; 1978

About this work
As his empty bag suggests, this young Carmelite monk is setting out to collect alms. Watteau, whose work combines a keen attention to character and gesture with subtle elegance and lightness of touch, captures both the details of the monk’s costume and his haughty expression. As was his usual practice, he first outlined the figure in red chalk before working up the contours in red and black, using both chalks as well as the neutral tone of the paper to suggest the heavy folds of the friar’s woollen habit. (Permanent collection label)

Copyright: © The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London

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