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Royalists to Romantics

Women Artists from the Louvre, Versailles, and other French National Collections

Edited by Jordana Pomeroy with essays by Laura Auricchio, Melissa Lee Hyde and Mary D. Sheriff

    ISBN: 978 1 85759 743 1

    Size: 279 x 241 mm / 9 x 11 in.

    Binding: Hardback

    Pages: 136

    In association with:

    Date published: February, 2012

    UK £29.95 /US $45


  • Features still-life paintings by Anne Vallayer-Coster, portraits of significant political and cultural figures by Élisabeth Louise Vigée-Lebrun and Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, history paintings by Antoine Cécile Hortense Haudebourt-Lescot, landscapes by Louise Joséphine Sarazin de Belmont and sculpture by Félicie de Fauveau, among others
  • Accompanies a major exhibition at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC in 2012


The rich collections of paintings and sculptures by women in the Louvre, Versailles, Fontainebleau and other venerable French collections present an outstanding opportunity to explore the important contributions that women artists made in France between 1750 and 1848, a period that saw the waning of the ancien régime, the traumas of the French Revolution, the rise and fall of Napoleon and the restoration of the monarchy. Royalists to Romantics features some seventy-five paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings by thirty-five French women artists of this era. These stunning works both illuminate their makers’ careers and offer a new narrative about the art world of the Revolutionary period. Published to accompany a major exhibition at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC, this beautifully illustrated book examines eighteenth-century French theories of sexual difference and their influence on the ‘woman-artist question’; paradoxical Revolutionary attitudes toward women artists, who encountered as many new limitations as opportunities; and the complex ways that women marketed their reputations and managed their cultural positions in France’s intricate social and artistic hierarchy.

Author information

Jordana Pomeroy is the Chief Curator at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC. Laura Auricchio is Chair of Humanities and Associate Professor of Art History at The New School. Melissa Lee Hyde is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Florida. Mary D. Sheriff is W.R. Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.