Study of Drapery

Pierre Paul Prud'hon French

Not on view

This detailed drapery study is one of several drawings Prud’hon made for his painting of Andromache and Astyanax (1813–17, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). The painting, which was not completed in his lifetime, depicts a scene from Racine’s play, in which Andromache rejects Pyrrhus, whose father, Achilles, had killed her husband Hector. This sheet was a study for the lower hem of Andromache’s gown as it falls over the side of a chair, a detail he made changes to as he worked on the canvas. The delicate stumping of the black and white chalk endows the drawing with a velvety yet radiant quality. Prud’hon’s delicate draftsmanship captures the weave and the fringes of the drapery—elements that were altered in the final painting.

Study of Drapery, Pierre Paul Prud'hon (French, Cluny 1758–1823 Paris), Black and white chalk with stumping on blue paper, some squaring in black chalk

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