Anne Vallayer-Coster

Painter to the Court of Marie-Antoinette

Edited by Eik Kahng and Marianne Roland Michel; With contributions by Colin B. Bailey, Claire Barry, Laurent Hugues, and Melissa Hyde

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Anne Vallayer-Coster (1744–1818) was one of the most talented still-life painters of the French school. Her exquisite paintings, today located in some of the world’s finest museums, were admired and collected by many of her contemporaries, including Marie Antoinette, who became the artist’s most important patron.

This lavishly illustrated book, the first devoted to Vallayer-Coster in over 30 years, presents a stunning array of the artist’s still-life works, many of which have never before been reproduced in color. Recently rediscovered works, including three royal portraits from the collection of Versailles and a hitherto unknown pastel of Marie-Antoinette, are published here for the first time. The authors draw on the most current research to examine Vallayer-Coster’s relationship with landscape painter Joseph Vernet; her response to her immediate predecessor, still-life painter Jean-Siméon Chardin; her role with contemporary collectors of her art; and her place in the larger context of the eighteenth-century art world. The book also includes new archival and conservation findings and an illustrated index of extant paintings by Vallayer-Coster.

Eik Kahng is associate curator of 18th- and 19th-century European art at the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. Marianne Roland Michel is a leading expert of 18th-century French painting and author of the 1970 monograph on Vallayer-Coster. Contributors to the book are Colin Bailey, Laurent Hugues, Melissa Hyde, and Claire Barry.

"For its extensive coverage of historical, aesthetic, and technical aspects of the art and era of Vallayer-Coster, this catalogue is a valuable source of  information for specialists and readers in general, and a useful complement to existing scholarship."—Joyce M. Davis, New Perspectives on the Eighteenth Century

“Not only a visual delight but a first rate contribution to the scholarship on women and art.”—Virginia Pitts Rembert, Times Literary Supplement


"This volume, the only recent title devoted solely to this artist, has lovely illustrations and thorough documentation."—Library Journal

"The book is admirably well balanced and impeccably scholarly throughout."—Melissa Percival, The Art Newspaper

"Kahng’s analysis has brought fresh insights and convincingly new conclusions to familiar territory."—Choice

Winner of the Mitchell A. Wilder merit award for excellence in Publication and Media Design, awarded by the Texas Association of Museums
ISBN: 9780300093292
Publication Date: June 10, 2002
Publishing Partner: Published in association with the Dallas Museum of Art
256 pages, 9 x 12
190 b/w + 100 color illus.
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