Art/ Collection/ Art Object

The Charlatan and the Peep Show from a set of the Italian Village Scenes

Designer:
Designed by François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris)
Manufactory:
Beauvais
Workshop director:
André Charlemagne Charron (French, active 1754–80)
Patron:
Commissioned for Boulard de Gatellier (Château de Gatellier (Loire))
Date:
designed 1734–36, woven 1762
Culture:
French, Beauvais
Medium:
Wool, silk (21-23 warps per inch, 8-9 per cm.)
Dimensions:
111 1/2 × 160 1/2 in. (283.2 × 407.7 cm)
Classification:
Textiles-Tapestries
Credit Line:
Gift of Mary Ann Robertson, 1964
Accession Number:
64.145.1
Not on view
Images of gardens were popular in the tapestry medium from the medieval era, where the so-called mille-fleurs (thousand flowers) (see also 2013.506) provided a decorative, and sometimes symbolic, setting for scenes of romance and play. Park and garden tapestries continued to enjoy popularity throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, particularly for the decoration of more intimate chambers, where they provided a pleasant contrast with the grander subject matter of tapestries used in more formal settings. The theme enjoyed new popularity with the advent of the Rococo style during the eighteenth century, and a number of highly decorative landscape and garden series were produced in French and Netherlandish workshops during the second third of the eighteenth century. Among the most notable was the series of romantic pastorals that Boucher designed for the Beauvais workshops between 1734 and 1736 (64.165.1–.8). Known as the Fetes Italiennes, and loosely inspired by the idyllic park scenes of Antoine Watteau, this series depicted handsome gentlefolk and peasants in idealized exterior settings.
Signature: Signed and dated: (on stone block, below column, in reverse) BOUCHEP/ 1736
Boulard de Gatellier (until 1896; sold to Joel Duveen) ; [ Joel Duveen (purchased in 1898) ] ; R. W. Hudson (from 1900) ; George Blumenthal , New York (from ca. 1928) ; by descent, Mary Ann Robertson (until 1964; to MMA)
Related Objects

The Charlatan and the Peep Show from a set of Italian Village Scenes

Artist: François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris) Date: designed 1736, woven 1736–52 Medium: Wool, silk (19-22 warps per inch, 8-9 per cm.) Accession: 49.7.119 On view in:Not on view

Half-Length Study of a Man

Artist: François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris) Date: 18th century Medium: Black and white chalk on beige (probably formerly blue) laid paper Accession: 2004.475.8 On view in:Not on view

Young Man Wearing a Beret

Artist: François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris) Date: 18th century Medium: Red, black, and white chalk on beige antique laid paper Accession: 2004.475.4 On view in:Not on view

Young Women Holding Flowers, from Nouveau Livre de diverse Figures (New Book of Various Figures)

Artist: François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris) Date: 1751 Medium: Etching; second state of two (Baudicour) Accession: 53.523.24(4) On view in:Not on view

A Man, seen from behind, holding a trophy of arms, from Nouveau Livre de diverse Figures (New Book of Various Figures)

Artist: François Boucher (French, Paris 1703–1770 Paris) Date: 1751 Medium: Etching; second state of two (Baudicour) Accession: 53.523.24(3) On view in:Not on view