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Delacroix Drawings: The Karen B. Cohen Collection

Dunn, Ashley E., with contributions by Colta Ives and Marjorie Shelley
176 pages
205 illustrations
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Known as the master of French Romanticism for his energetic paintings, Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863) was also a consummate draftsman. Yet his drawings remained largely unknown to the public during his lifetime. Beginning with a posthumous studio sale in 1864, however, these drawings have been sought after and widely appreciated for the incomparable insight they afford into the artist’s process.

This handsome book, one of the few to explore the topic in depth, provides new insight into Delacroix’s drawing practice, paying particular attention to his methods and the ways in which he pushed the boundaries of the medium. It showcases a selection of more than one hundred drawings, many of which have been rarely seen, from Karen B. Cohen’s world-renowned collection. The works highlighted here range from finished watercolors to sketches, from copies after old masters and popular prints to drawings preparatory to many of Delacroix’s most important painting and print projects. Illustrated with a wealth of comparative images, the book examines the essential role of drawing in the artist’s formation and aesthetic practice, while two shorter texts trace the history of the collecting of Delacroix’s work at the Metropolitan Museum and present important new research on his materials and techniques.

Met Art in Publication

Studies of Twelve Greek and Roman Coins, Eugène Delacroix  French, Lithograph; second state of four
Eugène Delacroix
The Adoration of the Kings, Jan (Hans) Witdoeck  Flemish, Engraving; third state of three
Jan (Hans) Witdoeck
The Flight into Egypt, Ignatius Cornelis Marinus  Flemish, Engraving; second or third state of three
Ignatius Cornelis Marinus
The March of Silenus, Christoffel Jegher  Flemish, Woodcut
Christoffel Jegher
ca. 1652
Icones et segmenta illvstriuvm e marmore tabvlarvm qvae Romae adhvc extant a Francisco Perrier, delineata incisa et ad antiqvam formam lapideis exemplaribvs passim collapsis restitvta, François Perrier  French
François Perrier
The Iliad of Homer, The Odyssey of Homer, Compositions from The Tragedies of Aeschylus, and The Theogony, Works and Days of Hesiod, John Flaxman  British, Illustrations: line engraving and stipple engraving (Hesiod only)
John Flaxman
Political-Candour;– i.e.–Coalition-Resolutions of June 14th, 1805.–Pro bono Publico–, James Gillray  British, Hand-colored etching
James Gillray
June 21, 1805
The Sea at Dieppe, Eugène Delacroix  French, Watercolor on laid paper
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1852–54
Jewish Musician in Mogador Costume, Morocco, from "Le Magasin Pittoresque", Eugène Delacroix  French, Wood engraving on newsprint; second state
Eugène Delacroix
January 1842
Studies of Four Englishmen, after James Gillray, Eugène Delacroix  French, Brush and brown ink on tracing paper, laid down
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1817–25
Theatrical Troupe on the Road, Eugène Delacroix  French, Pen and brown ink, watercolor, over graphite
Eugène Delacroix
Théâtre Italien (Gioacchino Rossini, 1792–1868), Eugène Delacroix  French, Graphite with brush and brown wash; red chalk applied to verso for image transfer
Eugène Delacroix
Théâtre Italien, Eugène Delacroix  French, Lithograph; only state
Eugène Delacroix
Le Grand Opéra, Eugène Delacroix  French, Lithograph; second state of two
Eugène Delacroix
The Figure of Religion (recto/verso), Eugène Delacroix  French, Pen and brush with iron gall ink (recto); pen and iron gall ink over graphite (verso)
Eugène Delacroix
Figure Studies after Rubens's "Fall of the Rebel Angels", Eugène Delacroix  French, Graphite
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1820–22
Figures in Medieval Costume (Tracings from the "Nuremberg Chronicle"), Eugène Delacroix  French, Graphite on tracing paper, laid down
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1822–30
Combat of Nude Men, after Raphael, Eugène Delacroix  French, Pen and brown ink on tracing paper laid down
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1823
Battle Scene with a Prisoner Being Bound, after Raphael, Eugène Delacroix  French, Graphite on tracing paper, laid down
Eugène Delacroix
ca. 1823
The Agony in the Garden, Eugène Delacroix  French, Brush and brown wash over graphite
Eugène Delacroix
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View Citations

Dunn, Ashley Elizabeth, Marjorie Shelley, and Colta Feller Ives. 2018. Delacroix Drawings: The Karen B. Cohen Collection. New York: the Metropolitan museum of art.