Annette and Lubin
Watercolour, gouache and silver paint on vellum
ANNETTE & LUBIN
Purchased from Motley Books, July 2021.
Miniature painting by Jean Louis de Faesch, depicting the title characters in Justine Favart's opéra comique 'Annette et Lubin' with music by Adolphe Benoît Blaise. The image presumably depicts Madame Favart and Joseph Caillot who originated the roles at its premiere at the Comédie Italienne in 1762, although it seems to have been performed many times between 1762 and 1792.
This type of portrait of actors in character came into fashion in Paris during the 1720s, initially on enamel and ivory, and later on vellum. This fashion passed to England thanks to the relationship between the French actor Lekain and David Garrick. The success of these paintings led to a published edition in 1770 of 24 portraits, titled ‘Dramatic characters, or Different Portraits of the English Stage’. A French version was published around the same year: ‘Les Métamorphoses de Melpomene et de Thalie, ou caracteres dramatiques des Comédies Francaise et Italienne’.
This image of Annette et Lubin does not seem to have appeared in 'Les Métamorphoses...'. It is not yet known if or where it was published.