Art/ Collection/ Art Object

The Faïence Restorer

Paul-Narcisse Salières (French, Carcassonne 1818–1908 Marseilles)
Oil on canvas
23 3/8 x 25 in. (59.4 x 63.5 cm)
Credit Line:
The Whitney Collection, Promised Gift of Wheelock Whitney III, and Purchase, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles S. McVeigh, by exchange, 2003
Accession Number:
Not on view
Salières, who studied with the academic painter Paul Delaroche, made his exhibition debut at the Paris Salon of 1847 and showed this painting there the following year; it retains its original frame. This is ostensibly an unassuming scene of everyday life in the artist's native Languedoc region. But for many mid-nineteenth century viewers it would have evoked La cruche cassée (The Broken Pitcher), the iconic painting of lost innocence by Jean-Baptiste Greuze (1725–1805), then as now in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.
Inscription: Signed (lower left): P. N. Salieres
Monsieur C[...]. (until d.; his estate); Camille Renault (until d.; estate sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, April 9, 1986, no. 204, to Whitney); Wheelock Whitney III, New York (from 1986)
Paris. Salon. 1848, no. 4049 (as "Le raccommodeur de faïence").

Aleth Jourdan in Courbet à Montpellier. Exh. cat., Musée Fabre. Montpellier, 1985, p. 82, under no. 60, cites it among examples of Salière's genre scenes inspired by street life.

Asher Ethan Miller. "The Path of Nature: French Paintings from the Wheelock Whitney Collection, 1785–1850." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 70 (Winter 2013), p. 47, fig. 66 (color).

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