Upgrade image posted 26 February 2013 from Google Art Project via Wikimedia; spots and vertical scratches removed with Photoshop.
The Getty Museum has this note for the portrait, "The sitter, Victoire-Pauline de Riquet de Carama, was an aristocrat and her status improved when she married Jean-Louis, Vicomte de Vaudreuil in 1781. The artist Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun emphasized the Vicomtesse's status and refinement by carefully describing her fashionable straw hat, silk dress, and gauze scarf, collar, and cuffs. Displaying her learning, the Vicomtesse places her right thumb in her book to mark her place, as if she has been interrupted while reading. Vigée Le Brun adopted this obvious gesture, often used in men's portraits, to illustrate women's importance in French Enlightenment circles."
Vigée-Lebrun portrays Vicomtesse Victoire wearing a gorgeous pre-revolutionary dress, possibly a sheath, and a wide hat. Ribbed fabric (organza?) engageantes and neckline adornments are common at this time.
Keywords: 1785, Vigée-Lebrun, Viscountess, French, long bouffant coiffure, hat, strap, bows, high neckline, neck ruff, collar, elbow length tight sleeves, engageantes, full skirt
Jun 10, 2011, 10:06 PM
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