Description Originally mounted as a screen to cover a fireplace during warm weather, in this exotic painting the artist has transformed the hearth into a miniature stage. Three fanciful Chinese characters hold aloft a circular screen on which is depicted the mythological story of Zeus showering Danaë with gold. A pair of figures, painted in grisaille on the side wall, incise their names on a tree trunk, a motif symbolizing eternal love. The fire screen is the earliest recorded work of Vigoureux Duplessis, an artist who was associated with decorative projects for the Paris Opera, the Royal Academy of Music, and the Beauvais Tapestry Manufactory.
- Le Théatre à Paris (XVIIe-XVIIIe siècle). Musée Carnavalet, Paris. 1929.
- The Age of Louis XV, French Painting 1710-1774. Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo; The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago; National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. 1975-1976.
- Chinoiserie: The Chinese Influence. Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati. 1979.
- Going for Baroque. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1995-1996.
- Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) Students Go for Baroque. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1995-1996.
Provenance Jules Strauss, Paris; Sale, Galerie Charpentier, Paris, May 27, 1949, no. 40; Sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, February 6, 1970; Galerie Pardo, Paris [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1972, by purchase.
Inscriptions [Signature] Lower center: Vigouroux Duplessis Invenit et pinxit; [Date] Lower center: 1700
Credit Museum purchase, 1972
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