Published: May 17, 2022
ROCKVILLE, MD. — Was there cosplay in French Eighteenth Century art? You bet. Ladies of the nobility and female members of the royal families have been depicted as goddesses in many paintings. “Portrait historié” is the term that describes portrayals of individuals in different roles such as characters taken from the bible, mythology or literature. These portraits were especially widespread in the Eighteenth Century French and English art. At Weschler’s spring Capital Collections auction on May 13, Nicolas Colombel’s (French 1644-1717) “Portrait of a Woman as Flora,” found favor with bidders, who pushed it above its $12/18,000 estimate to lead the sale at $34,440, including buyer’s premium. The oil on canvas, which shows an unknown model taking up the guise of the goddess Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers and of the season of spring, measured 29¼ by 32½ inches. It is going back to France. Additional fine art highlights from this sale and more will be reviewed in a future issue.
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