Madame Alexandre Lethière and Her Daughter Letizia

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres French

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 690

Ingres became close with the Lethière family while in Rome. Guillaume Guillon Lethière—the father-in-law and grandfather of the sitters in this work—was director of the French Academy there from 1807 to 1816. Rosa Meli was fifteen when she married his son, Alexandre Lethière, and she gave birth to their daughter the following year. In the drawing, she appears self-possessed as she gazes directly outward while propping the infant Letizia against her knee. Ingres’s refined neoclassical style and graphite technique contribute to the serene quality of the double portrait.

Madame Alexandre Lethière and Her Daughter Letizia, Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (French, Montauban 1780–1867 Paris), Graphite

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