Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun and the emigration (1789-1802)
As Vigée Le Brun depended professionally and socially on patrons from the royal family, the court and the aristocracy, she soon became unpopular and was the subject of scathing defamatory attacks in the underground press.
7 December 2015
On the night of 6 October 1789, she left Paris with her daughter and her governess and headed for Italy.
This was the start of her long voyage and exile which would last just over twelve years. Cut off from her husband who had provided for her needs up until then, the artist used her reputation and charisma to serve a European clientèle that was fascinated by the French model. Between 1789 and 1802, her talent was officially acknowledged by the artistic academies of Rome, Bologna, Parma, Florence and St. Petersburg.
Wherever she went, the artist was very successful and thanks to the prices asked for her works, she was able to lead a lifestyle worthy of her reputation. She also continued to develop her social circles.