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JACQUES PROU (1655-1706)

JACQUES PROU (1655-1706)


Signed to margin l.l. J. Prou f. Roma, numbered u.r. 38

Pen & ink on laid paper

26 x 40 cm



From an album of the artist's drawings (1);

Private collection, Oxfordshire





Jacques Prou was a French Academic sculptor, who spent four years at the French Academy in Rome between 1767-1770, the period from which this sheet almost certainly dates. He studied first in the Academy school in Paris, and after his Roman sojourn he returned to Paris to become a member of the group of artists responsible for the 'Bâtiments du Roi', from 1681, providing sculpture for Versailles in the atelier of Jean-Baptiste Tuby, whose daughter he married. He was received as a full member of the Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture in 1682, presenting as his reception piece a bas-relief of Sculpture consulting Painting over the portrait of Louis XIV, now at the Louvre. Prou was later made an assistant professor, 1701, and full professor at the Academy in 1704.


This sheet is absolutely typical of the rigorous topographical drawings which students at the French Academy in Rome were instructed to produce, usually from life, though it seems that Prou largely abandoned such work after his time in the city. He is however credited with producing at least two prints after Sebastien Bourdon, of the latter's neoclassical landscapes, suggesting an early versatility and eye for perspectival draughtsmanship. 


    (1) Another from this group, numbered 54, was sold as part of Paul Oppé's collection at Sotheby's, London, 05.07.2015, Lot 124. 

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