Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun : pastel, black stone and blood

Introduced to pastel painting by her father, Vigée Le Brun never abandoned this activity.
2 December 2015
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Portrait de Jules de Polignac enfant vers 1793-94 © Musée du Louvre, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Harry Bréjat
She devoted herself to it throughout her career. She skilfully created shaded tones and effects with colours and materials and her pastel paintings matched up to oil paintings.

She was a talented draughtswoman and left a small number graphic works showing great sensitivity. Pastels, black chalks and sanguine crayons lent themselves well to instinctive and fast drawings, often in the presence of models.

Vigée Le Brun also liked to use them when drawing her «têtes d’expressions», a genre popularised by her friend Jean Baptiste Greuze.
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