A view of the Giudecca by Francesco Guardi and the Regent’s son in Versailles
Francesco Guardi (1712-1793), Venice, a View towards the Giudecca and the Church of Le Zitelle, oil on canvas, 30.5 x 44.5 cm (12 x 17.5 in).
Old Masters and modern paintings, objets d'art and fine furniture brought the afternoon’s total result to €778,260. The winning bid of €253,200 for Venice, a View towards the Giudecca and the Church of Le Zitelle obviously contributed to that success. Everything about the work "radiates" the art of Francesco Guardi, who painted visual poems of the city in the 18th century, showing all its facets, character and life. This oil on canvas skillfully combines accurately-detailed buildings, a keen sense of refinement, atmospheric effects that herald Romanticism, and an already pre-Impressionistic light.
The high-quality program included two preemptions. It was only natural for the Chateau of Versailles to acquire, for €31,650, Charles-Antoine Coypel’s Portrait de Louis d'Orléans, fils du régent (Portrait of Louis d'Orléans, the Regent’s Son) painted c. 1730-1740. As First Painter to the Duc d'Orléans, Coypel made several portraits of him. This one is unique but the museum of Versailles has a preparatory drawing attesting to the existence of a version where the model appears from the knees up. Then the Musée Fabre de Montpellier, ever active and on the lookout, paid €7,342 for a trompe-l'œil of the Comte de Caylus (62.5 x 127 cm/24.6 x 50 in) by Jean Coustou (1719-1791), an oil on canvas dated 1778. Coustou was born in Montpellier and, after training in Paris, returned there to the studio of Jean II Restout in 1738, going on to become the city’s leading painter.