Quelques Idées sur la Disposition, L’Arrangement et la Décoration du Museum national…. Jean Baptiste Pierre LEBRUN.
Quelques Idées sur la Disposition, L’Arrangement et la Décoration du Museum national…
Quelques Idées sur la Disposition, L’Arrangement et la Décoration du Museum national…

By “The Eye of the Louvre”–C. Guichard

Quelques Idées sur la Disposition, L’Arrangement et la Décoration du Museum national…

Two folding engraved plates. 30 pp. 8vo (200 x 128 mm.), self-bound in two quires, stitched. Paris: Didot jeune, An III [1794/95].

First and only edition of one of Lebrun’s rare polemical pamphlets on the organization of the Louvre. Lebrun (1748-1813), the great Parisian art dealer and leading connoisseur of Dutch and Flemish art, played an outsized role in the creation of the Louvre. He was essential in the compilation of desiderata lists for the French confiscations of art in conquered territories throughout Europe. Then, once the artworks arrived in Paris, Lebrun was charged with their cataloguing and integration. In 1797, Lebrun was named commissaire expert of the Musée central, but he still sought to leave a larger imprint on the nascent national museum. Charlotte Guichard writes that Lebrun’s contribution to the creation of the Louvre remains underappreciated — calling him the “eye of the Louvre” — and that historians have focused too much on Baron Denon, who was appointed museum director in 1802.

Beginning in 1793, Lebrun launched a series of treatises regarding the arts and the values a great national museum should maintain. The present work presents his vision for the rooms of the Louvre and their organization. He even elaborates with precise measurements and the arrangement of specific genres of art. Of particular interest is Lebrun’s focus on the conservation of paintings. The two plates illustrate two of Lebrun’s proposals for the design of the museum’s entrance.

In very good condition. A fascinating museological treatise by a renowned art dealer.

❧ D. Speith, Revolutionary Paris and the Market for Netherlandish Art (2018), p. 214. See C. Guichard, “Le Marché au Coeur de l’Invention Muséale?: Jean-Baptiste-Pierre Lebrun au Louvre (1792-1802),” in Revue de synthèse, no. 2011-1, pp. 93-118. N. Etienne, ed., The Restoration of Paintings in Paris, 1750-1815 (2017), p. 58.

Price: $1,250.00

Item ID: 6701