Denis-Marie-Auguste RAFFET (Paris, 1804 - Genoa, 1860)
Auguste Raffet displayed a talent for drawing at an early age, and began his artistic career, at the age of eighteen, as a porcelain painter. He worked in the studio of the lithographer Nicolas-Toussaint Charlet between 1824 and 1829, and began producing his own lithographs, of Napoleonic subjects and battle scenes, in 1825. After completing his artistic training with the painter Antoine-Jean Gros, Raffet embarked on a successful career as a lithographer and illustrator. Among his patrons was Prince Anatole Demidoff, with whom he enjoyed a lifelong friendship. The two travelled extensively together, in Russia, the Crimea, Spain, Austria, Scotland and elsewhere. Raffet received numerous commissions from Demidoff and acted as his artistic advisor; he was also a frequent guest at the Prince’s home, the Villa San Donato outside Florence.