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Tuesday 19 December 2017

Charles Emile Jacque’s etching, “Laveuse” [Washerwoman], 1850

Charles Émile Jacque (1813–1894)

“Laveuse” [Washerwoman], 1850, printed by Auguste Delâtre (1822–1907)

Etching on chine-collé on laid paper
Size: (sheet) 14.2 x 8.6 cm; (plate) 10.1 x 5.7 cm
Inscribed on the plate: (upper left) “ch Jaque”:  with the artist’s signature; (lower-left) “68”; (lower-right) “Paris Imp. Aug. Delatre … [although the BM describes the text following the publisher’s name [Auguste Delâtre] as illegible, the inscription is most likely to be “Rue de B 19” as the publisher’s address is rue de Bièvre, 19, circa 1850–3 at the time that this etching was executed).
State ii (of ii) I may be wrong with my attribution of this print to the second state but there is certainly a state without the publisher’s details (see BM no. 1866,0210.129). (Note that Guiffrey in his catalogue raisonné does not record this state showing the publication details.)

Guiffrey 1866 154 (an undescribed state showing the publication details); IFF 250.

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:

JJ Guiffrey (1866) in “L’Oeuvre de Ch. Jacque: Catalogue de ses Eaux-Fortes et Pointes Sèches” offers the following description of this print:
“154. Laveuse. Une paysanne, le jupon retroussé & chaussée de sabots, lave dulinge dans un baquet élevé sur une sorte de trépied à gauche. Le fond n’est pas indiqué, 1850. Signé: Ch. Jacque.” (Google Transl: “154. Washer. A peasant petticoat tucked & floor shoes, washing dulinge in high bucket on a sort of tripod left. The bottom is not shown, 1850. Signed: Jacque Ch.”

Condition: a museum quality, richly inked and crisp impression with small margins in pristine condition. The sheet is laid upon a support sheet of washi paper.

I am selling this superb print that I see as one of Jacque’s masterpieces, despite its small size and being more of a study-sketch rather than a formal composition, for AU$148 (currently US$113.70/EUR96.22/GBP85.03 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this simple but magnificent image from the Barbizon School of artists, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold

This is the second time that I have listed this small masterpiece. I simply do not understand why it hasn’t sold as to my eyes this is—or should be—one of the treasures from the Barbizon School in that it showcases the noble beauty of working folk. The reason that it is so wonderful—again, “to my eyes”—is certainly closely connected to the loose freedom/sketch quality of the linework, termed  “croquis”, which was a cherished trait in France in the latter half of the 19th century spurred on by a fresh appreciation of the prints of Rembrandt. Beyond the supreme confidence of the drawing, there is also the way that Jacque has composed this very unpretentious subject. Note for example how the tripod balance of the stool supporting the washtub is extended to the balance of the washerwoman as the young lady leans over the tub. Note also how the interconnection of the woman and the tripod washtub creates a very simple three-dimensional form in space: a cone.

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