Gallery of prints for sale

Sunday 16 August 2020

Jean Pierre Norblin de la Gourdaine’s etching (with drypoint), “Head of a Man with a Full Black Beard,” 1778

Jean Pierre Norblin de la Gourdaine (aka Jean Pierre Norblin de la Gordaine) (1745–1830)

“Head of a Man with a Full Black Beard,” (MIA title), 1778

Etching and drypoint on ivory wove (China) paper with a small margin around the platemark and backed with a support sheet.

Size: (oval sheet) 3.8 x 3.4 cm; (oval plate) 3.1 x 2.8 cm.

Inscribed on plate at left: “Nf./ 1778”.

State iii (of iii) lettered with date. Hillemacher (1848) advises that the first state shows the man without his beard; second state shows the man with a fuller beard and his left shoulder. Hillemacher does not offer a description of the third state but clearly more of the beard is shown than in second state. Accordingly, I have attributed this impression to the third state as the man’s beard is as full as I can envisage a beard might be.

Hillemacher 1848 68 (Frédéric Hillemacher 1848, “Catalogue des estampes qui composent l'oeuvre de Jean-Pierre Norblin”, Paris, Lacrampe et Fertiaux, pp. 38–39, cat. no. 68).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:

“Head of a stout bearded man, looking to right; within oval. 1778”


See also the description of this print at the Minneapolis Institute of Art:

Condition: richly inked and well-printed, faultless impression with a small margin trimmed around the oval platemark. The sheet is in near pristine condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of use) and is laid onto a support sheet of archival (millennium quality) washi paper.

I am selling this small jewel of an etching—the oval image is approximately the size of a thumbprint—by one of the most important artists of the Enlightenment in Poland for AU$280 (currently US$200.89/EUR169.57/GBP153.52 at the time of posting this print) including Express Mail (EMS) postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this small masterwork from the 1700s in the final state where the portrayed man has a full beard unlike the earlier two states where it “grew” from the first state where this man was beardless, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please let me know your thoughts, advice about inaccuracies (including typos) and additional information that you would like to add to any post.