Attributed to Julie Buchet (1847 - 1921).
Portrait of Venus.
Oil on canevas after an antique marble or plaster.
Late 19th century.
As a woman artist born in the middle of the 19th century, Julie Buchet was one of these women painters who had to struggle to be recognized in a man’s world but never gave up their passion for painting.
She got around the impossibility for women to join the french Academy of Fine Arts by attending Madame Trélat Vigny’s studio where the greatest master of the time shared some of their knowledge. That is how Julie Buchet was trained Jean-Léon Gérôme and Léon Bonnat.
In addition to this quality artistic education, she took advantage of her position as a restorer in the Louvre Museum and became a renown painter by displaying her works at the Salon of the Union of Women Painters and Sculptors from 1884.
This Union of women artists was created by Hélène Bertaux in 1881 and the success of its annual exhibition grew over time with the reputation of its exhibitors.
She also exhibited her paintings at the Salon of the French Artists Society on several occasions, at the Chicago Universal Exhibition in 1893 and other renown salons.
One of her canevas named « Chrysanthemus » was even acquired by the state in 1892 and his held today by the Museum of Orsay.
Our painting was probably made after a casting intended for the study of one of the Louvre’s Venus as it is very close to the posture and physical appearance of the Venus d’Arles that is still showed in the rooms of the Louvre Museum today. The warm atmosphere that emerges from the white material of the subject is specific to the work of the artist who also represented a view of the room of the Venus de Milo with the same warm light bathing the marble.
By her precision combined with the isolation of the bust on a plain background, Julie Buchet praises antique art by giving a strong presence to her subject of study.