One of the most famous and influential artists of the eighteenth century, Jean-Antoine Watteau (c. 1684–1721) fundamentally changed the course of French painting. With masterpieces such as Les charmes de la vie, Lady at her Toilet and Les Champs Élisées, the Wallace Collection preserves one of the three outstanding collections of his paintings worldwide (together with Paris and Berlin) but it has never before been the subject of a special exhibition or a separate study.
Continuing the series of monographs highlighting important works by masters in the Wallace Collection, Watteau at the Wallace Collection discusses in depth all eight paintings by Watteau in the Collection and two of his lesser-known works at the Soane Museum and in York. Each of the paintings, which together span his entire career and represent many aspects of his work, will form the starting point for a chapter of the book. Among the topics discussed will be: Watteau and Theatre, Watteau and the Art Market, The Artist at Work, Watteau – the Academician, The Erotic and the Indecent in Watteau’s Work, and Watteau in London.