Jacques-Augustin-Catherine Pajou (1766-1828)
Portrait of the Artist’s Family, 1802
Oil on panel - 63 x 52 cm
Paris, Musée du Louvre
Photo : Saint-Honoré Art Consulting
27/3/14 - Acquisition - Paris, Musée du Louvre - A mother is playing with her child showing it his reflection in the mirror held by a young woman while her father-in-law smiles down at the them and the husband looks affectionately at his father with yet another woman bending over the child. At first glance, this charming and edifying scene evokes Greuze given its subject, but also Boilly for the very smooth and polished style. However, the brush is that of Jacques-Augustin-Catherine Pajou, the son of the famous sculptor. This is his own family which also includes his grandfather, present in the portrait hanging on the wall in the background.
Pajou the Younger as he is also known, and who was highlighted in a work published by Philippe Nusbaumer in 1997, was probably the student of François-André Vincent and Louis David. A history painter and portraitist, he is at his best here, showing exceptionally refined colors.
The work, exhibited at the Salon of 1802 will join several other paintings by this artist already at the Louvre : a Neo-Classic historical scene, Regulus’ Departure for Carthage, a double female portrait (Mesdemoiselles Duval) and a male portrait. This scene was recently acquired by the Louvre  from Saint Honoré Art Consulting (Etienne Bréton).