Game of Geography (Jeu de la Géographie)

by Rachel Vorsanger

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Title: Jeu de la Géographie (Game of Geography)
Artist: Etched by Stefano della Bella (Italian, Florence 1610–1664 Florence); designed by Jean Desmarets de Saint-Sorlin (French, 1595–1676); published by Henri Le Gras (French)
Date: 1644
Medium: Etching, state iii
Location: Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Estate of James Hazen Hyde, 1959
Accession Number: 59.654.19(1-42)

The Jeu de la Géographie is one of four sets of playing cards commissioned by Cardinal Jules Mazarin for the instruction and educational diversion of the young Louis XIV (1638-1715; r.… Read more

Portrait of Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619-1683)

By Robert Geilfuss

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Title: Portrait of Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619-1683)
Artist: Philippe de Champaigne (French, Brussels 1602–1674 Paris)
Date: 1655
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 36 1/4 x 28 1/2 in.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Credit Line: Gift of The Wildenstein Foundation Inc., 1951
MMA Accession Number: 51.34

Philippe de Champaigne’s presumed Portrait of Jean-Baptiste Colbert was painted in 1655. … Read more

The Months or The Royal Houses: April (Versailles)

By Garrett Swanson

Title: The Months or The Royal Houses: April (Versailles)
Artist: Designed by Charles Le Brun (French, Paris 1619-1690 Paris) and workshop
Date: Last quarter of the 17th century
Medium: Wool, silk, metal thread (haute lisse)
Dimensions: 13 ft. 1.5 in. x 21 ft. 3 7/8 in.
Mobilier National, Paris, GMTT 108/4

On the series of evocative landscapes set in the rich context of royal properties and woven by the Manufacture Royale des Gobelins in Paris, also known as The Months or The Royal Houses, little can be said with certainly about its artistic collaborators.… Read more

Seconde journée: Représentation du ballet et de la princesse d’Élide

By Sasha Kalter-Wasserman

Title: Seconde journée: Représentation du ballet et de la princesse d’Élide
Artist: Israël Silvestre (b. 1621, Nancy, France; d. 1691, Paris)
Date: later reprint of 1664 plate
Medium: Etching and engraving
Classification: Prints

Dimensions: Approximately 11 x 16.7 inches

Metropolitan Museum of Art
Credit Line: Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1930
MMA Accession Number: 30.22(32.45)

Image Source: Wikimedia CommonsRead more

Labyrinte de Versailles

By Lauren G. Close

Labyrinte de Versailles

Title: Labyrinte de Versailles
Artist: Written by Isaac de Benserade (French, 1613-1691) and Claude Perrault (French, 1613-1688); etched by Sébastien Leclerc I (French, Metz 1637–1714 Paris); published by L’Imprimerie Royale, Paris
Date: 1677
Medium: Etching
Dimensions: 8 7/16 x 5 13/16 x 3/4 in.
Classification: Prints
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Credit Line: Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1931
MMA Accession Number: 31.77.30

Published in 1677, Labyrinte de Versailles by Claude Perrault is a visitor’s guide to one of Versailles’ most remarkable garden attractions: the Bosquet du Labyrinthe.… Read more

The Fête of 1674, Versailles: Fifth Day, August 18, Fireworks on the Grand Canal

By Anne Correll

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Title: The Fête of 1674, Versailles: Fifth Day, August 18, Fireworks on the Grand Canal
Artist: Jean Le Pautre (Paris 1618-1682 Paris)
Published: From André Félibien, Les divertissements de Versailles donnez par le roy à toute sa cour au retour de la conquest de la Franche-Comté en l’année M.DC.LXXIV (Paris: Imprimerie royale)
Date: later reprint of the 1675-1676 plate
Medium: Etching and engraving
Dimensions: 11 ½ x 16 ½ in.… Read more

Clock with Pedestal

By Lourdes Figueroa

Title: Clock with Pedestal
Artist: Case attributed to André Charles Boulle (French, Paris 1642–1732 Paris); after a design by Jean Berain (French, Saint-Mihiel 1640–1711 Paris); clock either by Jacques III Thuret (1669–1738) or, more likely, by Isaac II Thuret (1630–1706), his father.
Date: ca. 1690
Medium: Case and pedestal of oak with marquetry of tortoiseshell, engraved brass, and pewter; gilt bronze; dial of gilt brass with white enameled Arabic numerals; movement of brass and steel.… Read more

Small Writing Desk (Bonheur-du-jour)

By Elizabeth Lyons

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Title: Small Writing Desk (Bonheur-du-jour)
Artists: Made by Martin Carlin (French, near Freiburg im Bresigau ca. 1730-1785 Paris); decorated by Denis Levé (French, active 1754-93, 1795-1805);porcelain plaques by Sèvres Manufactory
Date: ca. 1768
Medium: Oak veneered with tulipwood, amaranth, and stained sycamore; mahogany; seventeen soft-paste porcelain plaques; gilt-bronze mounts; velvet (not original)
Dimensions: 32 1/2 × 25 7/8 × 16 in.… Read more

The Panoramic View of the Palace and Gardens of Versailles

By Sophie Kroft

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Title: The Panoramic View of the Palace and Gardens of Versailles
Artist: John Vanderlyn (American, Kingston, New York 1775–1852 Kingston, New York)
Date: 1818-1819
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 12 x 165 ft.
Classification: Paintings
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Credit Line: Gift of the Senate House Association, Kingston, N.Y., 1952
MMA Accession Number: 52.184

John Vanderlyn was born in Kingston, N.Y.… Read more