TEFAF Online 2020
Trinity Fine Art is delighted to be exhibiting at TEFAF Online, in which each of the almost 300 participating exhibitors from across the global TEFAF community have been challenged to present a single masterpiece in their collection which best represents their expertise. The resulting showcase is a collection of artworks in the top segment of the market in one place. For the occasion we have chosen to exhibit a work painted in preparation for one of Antoine Jean Gros’ most important historical paintings which was presented at the 1812 Salon and entitled, “Charles V received by Francis I at the Abbey of Saint-Denis on January 13, 1540” (now in the collection of the Louvre). This large, masterfully painted work of the figure of Henri de Valois in court costume which, although it is a sketch, is finished to a high degree, constitutes a very important contribution to the study and evaluation of Gros’ body of work, showing even in its state as a sketch divorced from the rest of the composition, his artistic influences, his skill with compositional and pictorial expression and the same virtuosity as a colourist which are manifested in his great historical paintings. This is an excellent example of the “troubadour” style which was fashionable at that time in France, and also epitomises the cultural programme of the French Empire which was seeking to re-establish continuity with the past after the upheaval of the Revolution. Therefore this work not only provides a reflection of the past glories of French history but also serves to highlight contemporary triumphs in alluding to a similar meeting between Francis II and Napoleon after the French Victory at Austerlitz in 1805, thereby serving to illustrate the dynastic ambitions of the Empire.