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Tuesday 11 April 2017

Léopold Flameng’s etching, “La Source”, 1862 after Ingres

Léopold Flameng (aka Léopold Joseph Flameng) (1831–1911)
"La Source" (The Spring), 1862, after Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres’ (1780–1867) painting of the same name, published in “La Gazette des Beaux Arts, 1862, volume XII”, page 14.

Etching on buff coloured chine collé laid on heavy white wove paper with margins as published.
Size: (sheet) 31.2 x 22.2 cm; (plate) 24.6 x 14.4 cm; (chine collé) 23.6 x 13.3 cm; (image borderline) 18.5 x 9.4 cm
Lettered below the image borderline: (lower left) “INGRES PINXT” / “Les chefs d’œuvre _ 1”; (lower centre) “LA SOURCE” / “(MUSÉE NATIONAL DU LOUVRE)”; (lower right) "LEON GLAMENG SCULP" / “Imp. Taneur, Paris.”

Beraldi 1885-92 179 (Henri Beraldi 1885, “Les Graveurs du dix-neuvième siècle”, 12 vols plus supplement, Paris); IFF 111(“Inventaire du Fonds Français: Bibliothèque Nationale, Département des Estampes”, Paris, 1930); see also the description of this print in an earlier state held by the British Museum:

Condition: faultless impression in pristine condition with the original binding edge on the right side.

I am selling this etching by one of the major engravers of the 19th century for AU$42 (currently US$31.50/EUR29.76/GBP25.36 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in purchasing this famous etching of one of Ingres’ most celebrated nudes, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold

This nude is one of the most famous in history and it is certainly Ingres’ most celebrated nude. For those who like a bit of background grit to accompany their contemplation of the young woman’s beauty. She was a real person and not an academic concoction. In fact (according to Wikipedia), she was the young daughter of Ingres' concierge. Sadly, as we all know, beauty fades and (according to the Irish novelist, George Moore) the portrayed beautiful girl’s ultimate demise was to die of drink and disease in the hospital (see Cyril Barrett 1982, "The Morality of Artistic Production" in “The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism”. Wiley-Blackwell. 41 [2], pp. 137–144). 

As is often the case with nudes of this kind, the image has layers of symbolism. Beyond the overt symbolism of the young lady emptying a pitcher standing as visual metaphor for a sacred spring for divine/poetic inspiration, I’m more intrigued with the less obvious symbolism. According to Wikipedia, for instance:

“She stands between two flowers, with their ‘vulnerability to males who wish to pluck them’, and is framed by ivy, plant of Dionysus the god of disorder, regeneration, and ecstasy. The water she pours out separates her from the viewer, as rivers mark boundaries of which the crossing is symbolically important.”

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