5 thoughts on “Soldiers on the March – Jean Antoine Watteau (1684 – 1721)”

  1. I just noticed than the figures in the right foreground are almost identical to those in the engraving by Laurent Cars posted on March 7, 2012. In neither case can I figure out how they relate to the rest of the action.

    1. The engraving by Cars was made after a painting by Watteau, the so-called “L’Escorte d’équipage” of c. 1715, for a complete catalogue of Watteau’s paintings assembled by his friend and dealer Julienne. The full story of the painting is here: http://www.invaluable.com/auction-lot/jean-antoine-watteau-valenciennes-1686-1721-nogen-89-c-stf1sgrjs2 And another impression of Car’s engraving can be seen here: http://www.estampesmartinez.fr/index.php/w/watteau-antoine/lescorte-d%C3%A9quipage.-detail

      The engraving is of course reversed relative to the painting. The group of figures in the painting above must have been copied from the engraving, as they are also reversed relative to Watteau’s painting. As Car’s engraving was made after Watteau’s death one has to conclude that the above painting is not by Watteau but by a later imitator who “borrowed” the group of figures the engraving. And indeed the quality of this painting, the drawing and colour, are not what one would expect from Watteau.

  2. Further research shows that I was correct: this painting is not by Watteau but is an imitation based on engravings of two of his works. This painting resides in the Dulwich Picture Gallery in London. http://www.dulwichpicturegallery.org.uk/explore-the-collection/601-650/soldiers-on-the-march/
    I am preparing a blog post on the painting and its sources in Watteau’s work which will appear on 23 October at tigerloaf.wordpress.com

    Thanks to the blogger and to Bill Manthey for an interesting art historical puzzle.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *