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Pour nous prouver que cette belle
  • Date: c. 1717 - 1718
  • Object Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil on pine panel with walnut strips
  • Image size: 16.1 x 19.9 cm
  • Object size: Made up to, 18.6 x 23.7 cm
  • Inv: P377
  • Location: Small Drawing Room
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Further Reading
  • 'Pour nous prouver que cette belle' belongs to a series of three paintings with a similar group of main characters. It appears to be a transitional composition between Watteau’s 'Fête galante with a lute player and a bust of Bacchus' (c.1717; Potsdam, Schloss Sanssouci) and 'Les charmes de la vie' at the Wallace Collection (c.1718-19; P410), both much larger and of the same size. The seated woman in profile and the theorbo player are closer to the painting in Potsdam. Watteau might have produced this smaller and more condensed version as a model for a print by Louis Surugue published in 1719. The painting had as a pendant 'Arlequin, Pierrot and Scarpin' in Waddesdon Manor (The National Trust, The Rothschild Collection) that became the model for a second print of the same size, also by Surugue. Both paintings were slightly enlarged before the prints were made, at most a year after they were painted. This may well have happened under Watteau's eyes as his friend Pierre Sirois published both prints (see P381).

    Earlier doubts about the attribution of both paintings to Watteau are unfounded.