AUGUSTE EDOUART (1789-1861)
FRAMED SILHOUETTE PORTRAIT GROUP, DATED 1831
depicting Alexander Macaulay M. D., his family and their dog, with painted highlights, in a glazed bird's eye maple frame, signed lower left AUG. EDOUART FECIT 1831, paper label verso
30cm x 37cm
Note: A skilled portraitist who mastered the art of silhouette making, French-born Auguste Edouart initially began his career producing portraits from hair. After resigning from his position in Napoleon's army, Edouart travelled extensively around Europe and America where he developed his skill at free-hand paper cutting, producing life-like portraits in minutes. Edouart settled in Edinburgh for three years in 1829, producing around 5,000 silhouettes during this time. Much of his work features a number of profiles in large groups rather than individual sitters, illustrating his ability to represent a range of ages and social types. In this example, the complex composition depicts several generations, as well as the family's servants and their pet dog, set within an elaborate interior. Throughout his prolific career, Edouart's reputation gained him many commissions from high profile individuals such as Victor Hugo and Sir Walter Scott.