When Labille-Guiard exhibited the portrait at the Paris Salon, it was the only woman in the series. And she was breastfeeding.
Partly thanks to Carriera’s skill and clever marketing, pastel portraits became one of the most popular art forms of the Rococo era.
The Swiss artist Nicolas Party is both the subject and curator of Pastel, an extraordinary exhibition examining the under-appreciated, fugitive medium and its history.
In order to make large portraits of European elites, artists had to literally piece together pieces of paper, circumventing the limitations of their medium.