Eugène DEVÉRIA (Paris 1805 - Pau 1865)
A Mother and Child Sold
Pencil. A made up area at the bottom of the sheet.574 x 471 mm. (22 5/8 x 18 1/2 in.) [oval]ENQUIRE
The attribution of this drawing to Eugène Deveria is suggested by a comparison with a related drawing by the artist containing a pair of oval sketches - one depicting quite possibly the same mother and child and the other of the child alone, seated in a pose akin to that in the present sheet – in the collection of the Kunsthalle in Bremen. Also in Bremen is a related pencil study depicting the same sitters within an inscribed oval, with the young girl standing and holding a book. A third oval drawing of the same mother and child is in the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. All three drawings are believed to depict the artist’s wife Caroline and their daughter Marie, born in 1831, and may represent compositional studies for a planned oval portrait of mother and daughter. To judge from the apparent age of the young girl in these drawings, they may be dated to around 1835-1836, when Marie was four or five years old.Deveria met Caroline-Marie-Aglae Seconde Fraternelle, called Lavie-Duransel (1793-1863), when he was seventeen and she was twenty-nine. Although the relationship did not meet with the approval of Deveria’s parents or his brother Achille, Eugène refused to end the affair. Nevertheless, despite the birth of their only child Marie in 1831, the couple were not married until ten years later, in 1841. Marie died in 1856, at the age of twenty-six, while Caroline died in 1863, two years before the artist.
Jane Roberts, London, in 1989.