Lot 899

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Description:

(SMALLEST KNOWN NAPOLEON BONAPARTE PORTRAIT) JEAN-BAPTISTE ISABEY
JEAN BAPTISTE ISABEY (1767-1855) French painter born in Nancy, France. He was a successful artist, both under the First Empire and to the diplomats of the Congress of Vienna. Patronized by Josephine and Napoleon Bonaparte, he arranged the ceremonies of their coronation and prepared drawings for the publication intended as its official commemoration. Although Isabey did homage to Napoleon on his return from Elba, he continued to enjoy the favour of the Restoration, and took part in arrangements for the coronation of Charles X. His portrait of Napoleon at Malmaison is considered his best, and his miniatures were unsurpassed. Tiny graphite full-standing signed image of Napoleon Bonaparte, said by expert Bernard Ledoux to be 'probably the smallest known full length portrait of Napoleon in the world'. Napoleon's image is a mere one inch tall, and the drawing is signed 'Isabey' in graphite at lower right. The entire portrait measures 7/8 x 1 5/8 in. and is set behind a hand-painted gold-trimmed mat. The entirety rests with what appears to be a period frame, adorned with a gilt wreath and a Napoleonic eagle, posed ladies in gowns, and additional wreath set atop padde light green moire cloth. A delightful presentation, with fine work by a renowned artist, and particularly special as Napoleon is one of the most popularly represented historical personalities. From the personal collection of the owner of one of the world's largest private collections devoted to the French Revolution and Napoleon I, as well as the First and Second World Wars.

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January 19, 2024 10:00 AM EST
Chesapeake City, MD, US

Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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Bid Increments
From: To: Increments:
$0 $99 $10
$100 $499 $20
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $4,999 $250
$5,000 $9,999 $500
$10,000 $19,999 $1,000
$20,000 $49,999 $2,500
$50,000 $99,999 $5,000
$100,000 $999,999 $10,000
$1,000,000 $1,999,999 $50,000
$2,000,000 + $100,000