Pierrot Laughing

Nadar French
Adrien Tournachon French
Person in Photograph Jean-Charles Deburau French

Not on view

We owe the contemporary image of Pierrot to the famous mime Jean-Gaspard Baptiste Duburau, who replaced the ruff and wide white hat of the commedia dell'arte character with the long blank face and black skull cap that we recognize today. Charles Duburau, his son and also a mime, was asked by Nadar and his brother Adrien to pose for a series of "têtes d'expression" that would serve as publicity for the brothers' struggling studio. The series was an enormous popular success.

Pierrot Laughing, Nadar (French, Paris 1820–1910 Paris), Gelatin-coated salted paper print (vernis-cuir)

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.