THE HEAD OF A GIRL
By JEAN BAPTISTE GREUZE


THE HEAD OF A GIRL
By JEAN BAPTISTE GREUZE (1725-1805)
IN THE NATIONAL GALLERY, LONDON

Greuze furnishes an interesting example of the inability often displayed by artists and writers to appraise the value of their own work. He flattered himself that he was an historical painter, and it must be recorded that this unfortunate obsession made him ridiculous. As the result of many remarkable genre studies he was elected to membership of the Academy. He delayed the production of his diploma picture so long that he was forbidden at length to exhibit until he had supplied it. When eventually he submitted the painting it was found to be in the nature of an attempt to justify his claim to be a painter of historical subjects, but the result was such a fiasco as to call down upon him a dignified and tactful rebuke from the Director, after Greuze had been received with ceremonious honour. Greuze took the courteously administered snub in bad part and for many years refused to exhibit.

The whole episode illustrates the curious lack of judgment which is apt to affect the great. The triumph which Greuze achieved was that he gained an enormous popularity as a painter of scenes of domestic life, when this seemed the exclusive privilege of painters of historical or allegorical pictures. That triumph he could not or would not acknowledge, but preferred to suffer by comparison in a commonplace department of art rather than shine by himself in an original sphere.

He acquired wealth as the result of his industry, but squandered his substance, and in the evening of his day was forced to solicit commissions which he was physically incapable of performing satisfactorily. Finally, in 1805 he died in the Louvre, in great poverty. " The Head of a Girl" reveals Greuze in his happiest style, and is an example of the kind of work that gained him popularity and fame for all time.

From the book "Famous Paintings" Volume 2 printed in 1913.


Online "Name the Painting"









Jean-Baptiste Greuze
biography at Wikipedia

Jean-Baptiste Greuze
pronunciation

Jean-Baptiste Greuze
paintings

Jean-Baptiste Greuze
at Web Museum, Paris

Jean-Baptiste Greuze
paintings at Wikipedia

Online book about Greuze
at Open Library.org


Famous Paintings in this Series





James Archer
My Great Grandmother


Bashkirtseff
The Meeting


Bouguereau
Charity


John Brett
From the Dorsetshire Cliffs


Arnesby Brown
The River Bank


Joseph Clark
Mother's Darling


John Constable
The Hay-Wain


Jean Baptiste Camille
Corot
The Fisherman's Hut


Jean Baptiste Camille
Corot
A Flood


Leonardo Da Vinci
Monna Lisa


Edouard Detaille
The Dream


Henri Fantin-Latour
Flowers


Thomas Gainsborough
Queen Charlotte


Thomas Gainsborough
The Market Cart


Jean Baptiste Greuze
The Head of a Girl


Jean Baptiste Greuze
Fidelity


James Clark Hook
Home With the Tide


Alfred William Hunt
Windsor Castle


Josef Israels
The Shipwrecked Mariner


B.W. Leader
The Stream in Summer-time


Madame Vigee Le Brun
Portrait of the Artist

Alphonse Legros
A Canal With a Fisherman


Anton Mauve
Watering Horses


J.L.E. Meissonier
The Cavalier


Sir J.E. Millais
Speak! Speak!


Sir J.E. Mallais
My First Sermon


George Morland
The Reckoning


George Morland
The Inside of a Stable


Murillo
The Immaculate Conception
of the Virgin


Alfred Parsons
When Nature Painted
All Things Gay


Ralph Peacock
The Sisters


Rembrandt
Syndics of the
Cloth Merchants' Guild


Guido Reni
"Ecce Homo"


Sir Joshua Reynolds
Portrait of Mrs. Richard Hoare
With Her Infant Son


Briton Riviere
The Temptation
in the Wilderness


Dante Gabriel
Rossetti
Day Dreams


John Singer Sargent
Miss Ellen Terry
as Lady Macbeth


Lady Stanley
(Dorothy Tennant)
His First Offence


Jan Steen
Grace Before Meat


Marcus Stone
On the Road from
Waterloo to Paris


Constant Troyon
Watering Cattle


H.S. Tuke
"All Hands to the Pumps"


Velazquez
King Philip IV. of Spain


S.E. Waller
Sweethearts and Wives


Thomas Webster
The Smile

Index
Famous Paintings Volume 1
Art Gallery

Index
Famous Paintings Volume 2
Art Gallery

Index
Art Appreciation
Lessons