The Trumpeter of the Hussars of Orleans in Dress Uniform - Théodore Gericault

The Trumpeter of the Hussars of Orleans in Dress Uniform

Théodore GERICAULT
(Rouen 1791 - Paris 1824)

Oil on canvas
H. 0,47 m; W. 0,38 m

Date: ca. 1814-1815

Provenance: M. G. Sortais collection
Sale Paris, 22 May 1925, Hôtel Drouot, André Desvouges & Henri Baudoin, auctioneers, F. Marboutin, expert, n° 48 : « Tableaux/ Géricault (Jean-Louis-Théodore)/ Rouen 1791 † Paris, 1824/ [n°] 48 – Trompette de Hussards de la Restauration ; étude / Il est assis à droite, le corps de profil vers la gauche, coiffé d’un haut shako rouge à plumet blanc, vêtu de son uniforme, son manteau blanc, orné de fourrure, sur l’épaule gauche. Sa main gauche est appuyée sur la garde de son sabre, de la droite il tient sa trompette./ Papier marouflé sur toile [The information is wrong: our painting was painted directly on canvas. Please note that the lot description of the 1925 sale was stuck on the stretcher of the picture.]. Haut., 47 cent ; larg., 38 cent./ Voir la reproduction » (Catalogue des tableaux anciens […], pastels, dessins, gravures […] composant la collection de M. G. S. [Sortais]
Heilbuth collection, Copenhagen (according to Eitner, 1983)
Private collection , France

Literature: Unknown author, « Revue des ventes de mai », Le Figaro artistique, 18 June 1925, p. 572.
Philippe Grunchec, Tout l’œuvre peint de Géricault, introduction by Jacques Thuillier, Paris, Flammarion, 1978, p. 99, quoted under n° 80 (by mistake, Philippe Grunchec identifies the Vienna picture with the one sold in the 1925 sale).
Lorenz Eitner, Géricault, His Life and Work, Londres, Orbis Publishing, 1983, p. 331, quoted note 74: « A replica of this picture [the Vienna painting] was formerly in the Heilbuth collection, Copenhagen ».
Philippe Grunchec, Tout l\'œuvre peint de Géricault, introduction by Jacques Thuillier, Paris, Flammarion, 1991 [revised and amplified edition of 1978], p. 99, quoted under no. 80 (by mistake, Philippe Grunchec identifies the Vienna picture with the one sold in the 1925 sale).
Lorenz Eitner, Géricault, sa vie, son œuvre, [1983], translated in English by Jeanne Bouniort, Paris, Gallimard, 1991, p. 418, quoted under n°73: « Une réplique du tableau figurait autrefois dans la collection Heilbuth, à Copenhague ».
Germain Bazin, Théodore Géricault. Étude critique, documents et catalogue raisonné, t. V, Le retour à Paris, Paris, Wildenstein Institute & Bibliothèque des arts, 1992, pp. 42, 179-180, n° 1560A: « Trompette de Hussards, Auteur inconnu. Situation actuelle inconnue ».

Related works: Trompette de hussards assis, Oil on canvas, H. 0,46 m; W. 0, 38 m, Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna

The Trumpeter of the Hussars of Orleans in Dress Uniform is a vigorous study from life in preparation for the final painting, which can be found today in the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna. The painter intentionally left this study unfinished, suggesting different shapes and fervently outlining the uniform. He then took this sketch back to his atelier and added a number of subtle changes, accentuating the more finalised look of the Vienna version.
Théodore Géricault, one of the greatest romantic painters, was also a soldier. The composition of our painting looks so natural that it is possible he had one of his friends from the new French Royal Army pose for this painting. The artist was able to perfectly capture the pride of the soldiers of the cavalry.
The painting will be included in the forthcoming Catalogue Raisonné des tableaux de Théodore Géricault in preparation by Mr Bruno Chenique. His complete documentation on this painting is available on simple demand.

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