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The Composer André-Ernest-Modeste Grétry (1741–1813)

Jean-Baptiste Stouf (Belgian (active France), Paris 1742–1826 Charenton-le-Pont, France)

Date:
1804–8
Culture:
French, Paris
Medium:
Marble
Dimensions:
Overall (confirmed): H. 67 1/4 x W. 36 1/4 x D. 30 5/8 in. (170.8 x 92.1 x 77.8 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Purchase, Josephine Bay Paul and C. Michael Paul Foundation Inc. Gift and Charles Ulrick and Josephine Bay Foundation Inc. Gift, 1969
Accession Number:
69.77
  • Description

    Commissioned in 1804 by the Comte de Livry and placed in the Opéra Comique in 1809, where it remained until 1887. Incised on the column are the names of forty-one of the sixty-odd operas composed by Grétry for the Opéra-Comique and the Académie de Musique. The informality of Grétry's costume and pose links this work to 18th century depictions of men of inspiration and genius, such as Handel's Roubiliac.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: On back of column base: CETTE STATUE DE GRETRY FUT ÉRIGÉE EN 1804,/PAR H. DE LIVRY,/ET POSÉE AU THÉATRE DE L’OPÉRA-COMIQUE EN/1809 [This statue of Grétry was erected in 1804./by H. de Livry./and installed in the theater of the Opéra-Comique in/1809]
    On scroll in Grétry’s left hand: Duo Du Sylvain/Andante/Ave[c] ton coeur s’il est fi/dèle qu’aurais-je encor[e] à desir[er] [Duo from Sylvain/Andante/“with your heart if it be true/what else could I desire?”]
    On front of column: La Fausse Magie/Céphale et procris/Les mariag. Samnits/Matroco./Le jugement de Midas/L’Amant.jaloux/Les Évenements impreu/Aucassin et Nicolette/Andromaque/Colinette à la Cour/L’embarras des Riche/La Caravane/L’épreuve Villageoise/Richard Coeur-de-Lion/Panurge,/Le mariag d’Antonio/Le Comte d’Albert.&/Le Rival Confident/Les meprises Par Ressemblance/Raoul Barbe bleue/Pierre-Le Grand/Guillaume Tell/Elisca
    On side of column: Les Vendangeuses/Isabelle et Gertrude/Le Huron./Lucile/Le Tableau Parlant/. SYLVAIN ./Les Deux Avares/L’Amitié À L’épreuve/zémir et Azor./L’Ami De la maison/Le Magnifique/La Rosière de Salenci
    on back of column: Le Prisonnier Anglais/Amphitryon/AsPasie/Callias/LisBeth/Anacréon &/& & &
    On pages of open book: MEMOIRE/OU/Essais Sur/La/Musique [the title of Grétry's own work on the theory of music, written in 1789]

  • Provenance

    Opéra Comique, Paris (Originally at the entrance to the Théatre Feydeau, in 1809. Subsequently moved to the various other locations occupied by the company. At the Salle Favart until the fire of 1887 at which time it was probably sold to a London dealer.); [ dealer , London (in 1892) ] ; [ Philippe Sichel , Paris (until 1899; sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, June 22 –24, 26–28, 1899, no. 113) ]; Rodolphe Kann (in 1907) ; [ Wildenstein and Co., Inc. , New York (until 1969; sold to MMA) ]

  • See also
    Who
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
205107

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