Drawing of the interior of a sanctuary "in honour of the three arts" (198 × 360 mm) View larger
Drawing of the interior of a sanctuary "in honour of the three arts" (198 × 360 mm)
  • Drawing of the interior of a sanctuary "in honour of the three arts" (198 × 360 mm)
  • Engraving by Pierre Moreau (245 × 385 mm platemark, 390 × 540 mm sheet)
Dumont (Gabriel-Pierre-Martin), 1720-1791

The interior of a sanctuary "in honour of the three arts", depicting the rotunda of the "Temple de Goût" and entrance to the "Temple a la Peinture" with its altar beyond

[Paris], 1762
Drawing, executed in pencil and brown wash, the tablet at left drawn on an overlay with an indistinct pencil inscription, laid within a black ink border to a sheet of 18th-century paper, 198 × 360 mm.

An interior view of the “Temple des Arts”, a monument honouring Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture on a triangular plan, where each one of the arts has a temple connected to the central one of Taste. “It is hard to prove the exact function of Dumont’s sanctuary, but it may have been conceived as a building for discussions on the arts of painting, sculpture and architecture, a kind of academy of fine arts” (Marcin Fabiański).

Subjects
Academies of fine arts
Book illustration - Artists, French - Moreau (Pierre), died 1762
Drawings - Artists, French - Dumont (Gabriel-Pierre-Martin), 1720-1791
Authors/Creators
Dumont, Gabriel-Pierre-Martin, 1720-1791
Artists/Illustrators
Dumont, Gabriel-Pierre-Martin, 1720-1791
Moreau, Pierre, died 1762

Dumont, Gabriel-Pierre-Martin
Paris 1720 – 1791 Paris

Drawing of the interior of a sanctuary ‘in honour of the three arts’, depicting the rotunda of the ‘Temple de Goût’ and entrance to the ‘Temple a la Peinture’ with its altar beyond

Paris circa 1762

drawing (198 × 360 mm), pencil and brown wash, the tablet at left drawn on an overlay with an indistinct pencil inscription, laid within a black ink border to a sheet of 18th-century paper (290 × 457 mm)

Slightly sunned; otherwise in good state of preservation. Mounted.

provenance Phillips Son & Neale, ‘Old Master Drawings,’ London, 6 July 1994, lot 64

Offered with

engraving (245 × 385 mm platemark, 390 × 540 mm sheet) of the same subject, in reverse, by Pierre Moreau, circa 1762, with the tablet now lettered:

Suite de divers morceaux d’architecture composés, et mis en perspective par le sieur Dumont professeur d’architecture pour servir aux peintres et décorateurs de théatres | [at upper right:] No. 10 | [and below:] Interieur d’un Temple des Arts, Composé Par Le Sieur Dumont, pour Sa Reception a l’Academie de Saint Luc de Rome; and legend: Dumont invenit. P. Moreau Sculps. Chez l’Auteur, rue des Arcis, Maison occupée par un Commissaire

In excellent state of preservation. Mounted.

An interior view of the ‘Temple des Arts’, a monument honouring Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture on a triangular plan, where each one of the arts has a temple connected to the central one of Taste. ‘It is hard to prove the exact function of Dumont’s sanctuary, but it may have been conceived as a building for discussions on the arts of painting, sculpture and architecture, a kind of academy of fine arts’.1

Born in Paris about 1720, Dumont won the Prix de Rome in 1737, and entered the French academy in Rome in 1742. He offered the ‘Temple des Arts’ as his morceau de réception to the Accademia di San Luca on 17 April 1746, presenting altogether five drawings, of which two (front elevation and ground plan) have survived in the academy’s archives.2

‘Son Temple des Arts apparaît comme une synthèse des sources à sa disposition: la Prima parte [of Piranesi], les machines pour la [Festival of the] Chinea du [Louis Joseph Le] Lorrain et la longue tradition de San Luca. Il avait sans doute eu connaissance du plan triangulaire de la pièce de réception de Carlo Fontana, datant de 1717. Par ailleurs, Dumont adoptait l’articulation en pilastres et colonnes du palais dei Conservatori de Michel-Ange. La vue vers l’intérieur est traitée à la manière des planches de la Prima parte, avec ses tables sculptées, ses guirlandes et son autel duquel s’élève la fumée’.3

In 1755, Dumont became professor at the Académie Royale d’Architecture in Paris, and soon began to transform the numerous drawings he had made in Italy into a series of architectural publications. He brought his ‘Temple des Arts’ project up-to-date, by altering the dome and eliminating the pilasters and the colum­nar porches at the ends of the three wings, and pub­lished it as Suite de divers morceaux d’architecture. Our drawing, engraved in reverse, became the title-print to this series of eight plates (see Fig. 2).

The suite appears in the ‘Etat de l’œuvre de Gravures’ of 24 January 1765 entitled Recueil de plusieurs parties d’Architecture, and described as ‘Divers Morceaux d’ Architecture. Autre Suite de même, dont 6 Perspectives et 2 Plans Géometreaux [sic]. 8 (grandes planches)’.4 Since the printmaker, Pierre Moreau, died in 1762, both drawing and print must have been executed before that date. Other prints in the suite were engraved by François-Philippe Charpentier, A. Le Canu, and Claude René Gabriel Poulleau; one is dated 1764. The complete Recueil comprises fourteen suites and was not finished until 1768.5

Fig.1 Drawing by Gabriel-Pierre-Martin Dumont
(reduced from 198 × 360 mm)

Our drawing is unpublished; however the project is discussed by John Wilton-Ely, in The Age of Neo-Classicism: a handlist to the fourteenth exhibition of the Council of Europe [held at] the Royal Academy and the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 9 September–19 November, 1972 (London 1972), no. 1890 (citing previous literature); and by Werner Oechslin, in Piranèse et les Français 1740–1790, catalogue of an exhibition under the auspices of the Académie de France à Rome held at Villa Medici, Rome; Palais des États de Bourgogne, Dijon; Hôtel de Sully, Paris, May–November 1976 (Rome 1976), no. 71.

Fig.2 Engraving by Pierre Moreau after Dumont
(reduced from 245 × 385 mm platemark)

1. Marcin Fabiański, ‘Iconography of the architecture of ideal musaea in the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries’ in Journal of the History of Collections 2 (1990), p.103; Édouard Pommier, ‘Images du musée dans la deuxième moitié du xviiie siècle’ in Jean-Baptiste Wicar et son temps, 1762–1834, edited by Maria Teresa Caracciolo and Gennaro Toscano (Villeneuve d’Ascq 2007), pp.39–61 (Dumont’s project p.41).

2. Paolo Marconi, Angela Cipriani, and Enrico Valeriani, I disegni di architettura dell’Archivio storico dell’Accademia di San Luca (Rome 1974), nos. 2137–2138.

3. Janine Barrier, Les architectes européens à Rome: 1740–1765; la naissance du goût à la grecque (Paris 2005), p.112.

4. Marie Joseph François Mahérault, L’œuvre de Moreau le jeune: catalogue raisonné et descriptif, avec notes iconographiques et bibliographiques (Paris 1880), p.107.

5. National Gallery of Art, The Mark J. Millard Architectural Collection, i: French Books (Washington, dc 1993, p.169 no. 66.

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