Soulacroix's fabulous oil on canvas painting of three elegant women at tea (est. $100,000-$150,000) is exquisite. The piece is framed in a beautiful gilded gold frame. Canvas size is 35" x 27", framed size is 48.75" x 40.75" x 4.5".
Provenance: This painting has been in a Greenwich, CT estate for three generations. Bought in Italy in 1920-1930, it stayed in a Park Avenue, N.Y. penthouse for a generation before moving to Greenwich, CT and the next two generations in the 1980's. The details and colors are truly a sight for the eyes.
Charles Joseph Frederic Soulacroix (1825-1879) received his first training after moving to Paris in 1845 and joining the Ecole des Beaux-Artes to study sculpture and painting. His training was in the Neo-classical tradition. Although sculptures were his primary medium in the beginning, that gradually changed, and was abandoned for paintings. About 1850, he had problems with ophthalmia due to the dust from the marble artwork. Soulacroix would go on to focus on paintings and became a French master. After studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Artes, he exhibited at the Salon in Paris in beginning in 1849. He had a particular interest in the elegance of Parisian high life. He was fascinated with depicting scenes of the upper class at leisure, dressed in lavish silks and satins. The artist created an image of social serenity. Soulacroix paid attention to every minute detail in his paintings. He managed to capture the intricate details of the luster, texture and reflections in the textiles surrounding the sitters and those found in the sitters' attire. His son Frederic Soulacroix (1858-1933) also would become a well-known painter in his time.