Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Portrait of Félix Ravaisson

Artist:
Théodore Chassériau (French, Le Limon, Saint-Domingue, West Indies 1819–1856 Paris)
Date:
1846
Medium:
Graphite on white wove paper darkened to buff
Dimensions:
13 1/8 x 10 in. (33.3 x 25.4 cm)
Classification:
Drawings
Credit Line:
Robert Lehman Collection, 1975
Accession Number:
1975.1.583
Not on view
Jean-Gaspard-Félix Larcher Ravaisson-Mollien (1813–1900) was a noted philosopher and archaeologist. The year Chassériau drew him, Ravaisson was awarded a prize by the French Academy for an essay on Aristotle’s metaphysics. Chassériau’s fondness for Ravaisson is expressed in a letter he wrote to the sitter’s brother Fréderic from Algeria. The painter asked Fréderic to pass on “a thousand fond thoughts to M. Ravaisson. In him, I have found the heart of a friend.” Chassériau’s penciled inscription on the drawing further testifies to that affection.
Signature: Inscribed, signed and date by the artist in the lower left corner: A Félix Ravaisson/ son ami/ Théodore Chassériau/ 1846.
Ravaisson-Mollien family; Ravaisson-Mollien sale, Galerie Charpentier, Paris, 31 March 1960, lot 1; [Wildenstein & Co., New York]; acquired by Robert Lehman from Wildenstein, 25 July 1961.
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