John Singer Sargent / Madame X (Madame Pierre Gautreau) / 1883-1884John Singer Sargent
Madame X (Madame Pierre Gautreau)

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Creator Name: Sargent, John Singer
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1856-1925
Creator Name-CRT: John Singer Sargent
Title: Madame X (Madame Pierre Gautreau)
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1883
Creation End Date: 1884
Creation Date: 1883-1884
Object Type: Paintings
Materials and Techniques: oil on canvas
Dimensions: 82 1/8 x 43 1/4 in. (208.6 x 109.9 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 16.53
Credit Line: Arthur Hoppock Hearn Fund, 1916

Virginie Avegno (1859-1915) was born in Louisiana, the daughter of Major Anatole Avegno of New Orleans, a gentleman whose family had emigrated from Camogli, Italy, and Marie Virginie de Ternant of Parlange Plantation, Louisiana. After Major Avegno died of wounds suffered at the Battle of Shiloh, Mrs. Avegno took her daughters to Paris. There Virginie became a celebrated beauty and married Pierre Gautreau, a Parisian banker. Sargent probably met her in 1881. In 1882, he wrote of wanting to paint her portrait. He worked on the portrait at the Gautreau's summer home in Brittany in 1883, but he had difficulty finding a suitable pose and perspective. Numerous studies show his different attempts at the composition. The portrait as finally executed was exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1884 as 'Portrait de Mme ***' and created a scandal. Sargent considered it one of his best works; an unfinished second version of the same pose is in the Tate Gallery in London.

AMICA ID: MMA_.16.53
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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