05 November 2009

Reluctant Genius

He is a great portrait artist . . . yet Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres would rather never have painted any.


Clive Reynolds said...

This gentleman's art stirs my soul.
The portrait here of Madame d'Haussonville is just so perfect. Strange that he considered portraiture to be a 'lower' form of art, I never understood that. Was it perhaps a 'fashion' trend of the day? Maybe someone could explain this.

Nick said...

Ingres is a lesson in the frustration that arises by going against the flow.

A bit of reading about his career reveals that he would rather have spent his time on grander, historical subjects. Yet, his time was taken up by portraiture.

Although continuing to draw and paint portraits until he died, the annoyance was there. Perhaps, as you say, he considered portraiture somehow inferior instead of accepting the obvious: he was a master.