Object Image

Ancient Scene with a Funeral Ceremony for an Actor

Acquired in 1971 as the work of Louis Jean Desprez, the drawing was re-attributed to Louis Félix de La Rue in 1977. In 2017, the attribution reverted to Desprez based on Marie-Anne Dupuy-Vachey's identification of the drawing as one commissioned from the artist by the abbé de Saint-Non for his publication, Voyage Pittoresque. The sheet is described in a manuscript by Vivant Denon as representing the funerary cermony following the death of a celebrated actor (Dupuy-Vachey, M.-A., Vivant Denon et le 'Voyage pittoresque': un manuscrit inconnu, Paris: Fondation Custodia, 2009, p.116).

Credit: Purchase, Harris Brisbane Dick Fund and Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1971...

c. 1777
Pen and black ink and watercolor
32.4 x 21.7cm
1971.513.21
Image and text © Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2019

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The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Permanent collection