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Charles Joshua Chaplin 1825-1891 Painting of Belle Epoque Beauty

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Charles Joshua Chaplin 1825-1891

Painting of Belle Epoque Beauty

Oil on canvas in 19thc frame

45 x 35 cm

signed bottom right and verso


Beautiful oil on canvas by prolific French artist Charles Joshua Chaplin, the paining is in excellent condition and has not been relined.


The work of Charles Joshua Chaplin recreated the romanticism and elegance of 18th century French portraiture but his subjects were nevertheless recognizable as modern women.


In 1845 he entered the Salon de Paris, the official art exhibition of the Académie des Beaux-Arts, as a portrait and landscape painter with the painting Portrait of the Artist's Mother. Charles Joshua Chaplin conducted art classes specifically for women at his studio. The American artist Mary Cassatt, the French artist Louise Abbéma and the English artist Louise Jopling were among Chaplin's students.


Charles Joshua Chaplin made his debut at the Salon with portraits, but he also painted landscapes, especially the countryside and fields of Auvergne. His initial works, from 1848 to 1851, were painted in a more realistic style, which was a style that had been restored in France by the Second Republic. After the 1848 Revolution, the Realism art movement began in France in the 1850s. From the late eighteenth century, Romanticism overwhelmed French art but was spurned by Realists, who rebelled against the show of the feelings of the Romantic movement, looking to depict genuine and characteristic contemporary people and situations with truth and precision.


The muddy colors used by Charles Joshua Chaplin slowly transformed into white, gray, and pink, depicting his models with an opalescent, mother-of-pearl complexion by applying a subtle palette of rosy flesh tones and light grays. Chaplin took up genre painting in the 1850s. His favorite subjects are the feminine grace of a young woman’s everyday life.

Empress Eugénie, the wife of Napoleon III and an admirer of the "Pompadour style", fell under the enchantment of the painter's Neo-Rococo works. Chaplin was among Napoleon III and Empress Eugénie’s favorite court artists.

His sensual portraits of women and young girls, often with models posed erotically in hazy surroundings and wearing transparent clothing, attracted the interest of the high society and aristocracy of Paris, guaranteeing his success and wealth. Charles Joshua Chaplin was a standout and popular among the most mainstream painters of his time, yet these days his work is practically unknown, even though his works hang in many major museums the world over.