THE collections in the Louvre have no such necessary organic connection with Paris itself as Notre-Dame and the Sainte Chapelle, or even those in the rooms at Cluny. They may, therefore, be examined by the visitor at any period of his visit that he chooses. I would advise him, however, whenever he takes them up, to begin with the paintings, in the order here enumerated, and then to go on to the classical and Renaissance sculpture. The last-named, at least, he should only examine in connection with the rest of Renaissance Paris. Also, while it is unimportant whether he takes first painting or sculpture, it is very important that he should take each separately in the chronological order here enumerated. He should not skip from room to room, haphazard, but see what he sees systematically.
At least six days far more, if possible should be devoted to the Louvre collections, by far the most important objects to be seen in Paris. Of these, four should be assigned to the paintings, and one each to the classical and Renaissance sculpture. If this is impossible, do not try to see all ; see a little thoroughly. Confine yourself, for painting, to the Salon Carré and the Salle des Primitifs, and for sculpture, to a hasty walk through the Classical Gallery and to the three western rooms of the Renaissance collection.
The object of the hints which follow is not to describe the collections in the Louvre ; it is to put the reader on the right track for under-standing and enjoying them. It is impossible to make people admire beautiful things ; but if you begin by trying to comprehend them, you will find admiration and sympathy grow with comprehension. Religious symbolism is the native language of early art, and you cannot expect to understand the art if you do not take the trouble to learn the language in which it is written. Therefore, do not walk listlessly through the galleries, with a glance, right or left, at what happens to catch your eye ; begin at the beginning, work systematically through what parts you choose, and endeavour to grasp the sequence and evolution of each group separately. Stand or sit long before every work, till you feel you know it ; and return frequently. Remember, too, that I do not point out always what is most worthy of notice, but rather suggest a mode of arriving at facts which might otherwise escape you. Many beautiful objects explain themselves, or fall so naturally into their proper place in a series that you will readily discover their meaning and importance without external aid. With others, you may need a little help, to suggest a point of view, and that is all that these brief notes aim at. Do not be surprised if I pass by many beautiful and interesting things ; if you find them out for yourself, there is no need to enlarge upon them. Should these hints succeed in interesting you in the succession and development of art, get Mrs. Jameson and Kugler, and read up at leisure in your rooms all questions suggested to you by your visits to the galleries. My notes are intended to be looked at before the objects themselves, and merely to open a door to their right comprehension.
Take Baedeker’s plan of the galleries (first floor) with you. Enter by the door in the Pavillon Denon. Turn to left and traverse long hall with reproductions of famous antiques in bronze (Laocoon, Medici Venus, Apollo Belvedere, etc.), which those who do not intend to visit Rome and Florence will do well to ex-amine. Observe, in passing, in the centre of the hall, a fine antique sarcophagus, with figures in high relief, representing the story of Achilles. Begin on the furthest side of the sarcophagus : (I) Achilles, disguised as a woman, among the daughters of Lycomedes, in order to avoid the Trojan war; (2) is discovered by Ulysses as a pedlar, through his choice of arms instead of trinkets ; (3) arming himself for the combat ; and (4, modern) Priam redeeming the body of Hector. (The work originally stood against a wall, and had therefore three decorative sides only.) Further on, fine sarcophagus from Salonica, Roman period, with Combat of Amazons, representing on the lid husband and wife, couched, somewhat after the Etruscan fashion.
Mount the staircase (Escalier Daru). Near the top is the famous Nikè of Samothrace, a much-mutilated winged figure of Victory, standing like a figurehead on the prow of a trireme. It was erected by Demetrius Poliorcetes, in commemoration of a naval engagement in B. C. 305. Attitude and drapery stamp the work as one of the finest products of Hellenic art. Victory alights on the vessel of the conqueror.
Turn to your left just before reaching the last flight, and pass several Etruscan sarcophagi and sarcophagus-shaped funereal urns, many with the deceased and his wife on the lid, accompanied in some cases by protecting genii. The early Etruscans buried ; the later often burned their dead, but continued to enclose the ashes in miniature sarcophagi. At the top, on the left, a fresco by Fra Angelico, the Dominican painter, St. Dominic embracing the Cross, with the Madonna and St. John Evangelist : not a first-rate example of the master. End wall, right of door, a fresco by Botticelli, Giovanni Tornabuoni receiving the Muses. Opposite it, left of door, another by the same, Giovanna his wife receiving the Graces, and accompanied by Cupid. These two frescoes stood in the hall of the owner’s villa, and gracefully typify the husband entertaining Literature, Science, and Art, while the wife extends hospitality to Love, Youth, and Beauty. Descend one flight of staircase again, passing yet other Etruscan sarcophagi (which examine), and, mounting opposite stairs, pass the Nikè and turn to your right. Traverse the photograph-room and the Salle Duchâtel beyond it, as well as the Salon Carré. Enter the long gallery, and, taking the first door to your right, you arrive at once in Room I. (Baedeker’s VII.), the Salle des Primitifs.
The pictures in this room consist for the most part of those by early followers of Giotto, and by members of the schools which sprang from him, till the moment of the Renaissance. As these earliest pictures strike the keynote of types, continued and developed later, it is absolutely necessary to examine them all very closely. In most cases, subject and treatment were rigorously prescribed by custom ; scenes recur again and again, almost identically. Where saints are grouped around the Madonna, they were ordered by the purchaser, and oftenest represent his own patrons. In order to obtain a chronological view, begin at the centre of the end wall. Most of these pictures are altar-pieces. 1 follow the small numbers below, the only ones for which a detailed catalogue is yet published.
153. Cimabue (the point of departure for Tuscan art). Madonna and Child with six angels. Almost a replica of the great picture in Santa Maria Novella at Florence ; gold ground ; the Madonna’s face still strongly Byzantine in type, with almond-shaped eyes ; the Child draped, after the earlier fashion. Later, he is represented nude. Observe, however, the greater artistic freedom in the treatment of the attendant angels, where Cimabue was slightly less hampered by conventional precedents. Do not despise this picture because of its stiffness and its archaic style. It is an immense advance upon the extremely wooden Byzantine models which preceded it : and in the angels it really approaches correctness of drawing.
225 (Skied). Don Lorenzo Monaco. A Tabernacle for an altar of St. Lawrence ; centre, St. Lawrence, enthroned on his gridiron ; left, St. Agnes with her lamb ; right, St. Margaret with her dragon, all on gold grounds. A poor example. This saint is usually represented in deacon’s robes. The other saints are probably those who shared the chapel with him. See the much later St. Margaret by Raphael as an example of Renaissance treatment of the same figure.
192. Giotto. St. Francis receiving the Stigmata. A genuine picture, painted for the saint’s own church of San Francesco at Pisa ; one of the earliest representations of this subject, often afterward copied. Christ, as a six-winged seraph, red-feathered, appears in heaven to the saint ; rays proceed from his five wounds to the hands, feet, and side of St. Francis, which they impress with similar marks. A mountain represents La Vernia ; two tiny buildings, the monastery. Compare with this subject two smaller treatments in the same room, both on the lowest tier : one to the left as you go toward the door, 431, of the school of Perugino, where an attendant Brother (Leo) is seen astonished at the vision ; the second on the right, 287, attributed to Pesello, and closely similar in treatment. Careful comparison of these pictures will serve to show the close way in which early painters imitated, or almost copied one another. The base (or predella) of the Giotto also contains three other subjects : Innocent III., asleep, is shown by St. Peter the falling church sustained by St. Francis ; he confirms the Franciscan order ; St. Francis preaches to the birds. All very spirited. Notice these little pictures for comparison later with others painted in the Dominican interest by Fm Angelico.
Continuing along left wall are some small pictures of the Sienese school, which should be carefully examined. (Do not suppose that be-cause I do not call attention to a picture it is necessarily unworthy of notice.) Most of these little works breathe the pure piety and ecstatic feeling of the school of Siena.
426. Perugino. Tondo, or round picture ; the Madonna Enthroned ; left, St. Rose with her roses ; right, St. Catherine with her palm of martyrdom ; behind, adoring angels. An exquisite example of the affected tenderness, delicate grace, and brilliant colouring of the Umbrian master, from whose school Raphael proceeded. An early specimen. Observe the dainty painting of the feet and hands, which is highly characteristic.
Beneath it, 1701, Gentile da Fabriano. Presentation in the Temple. Look closely into it. A delicate little example of the Umbrian rival of Fra Angelico. The arrangement will explain many later ones. Every one of the figures and their attitudes are conventional.
427. Perugino. Madonna and Child, with St. John Baptist and St. Catherine. The introduction of St. John shows the picture to have been probably painted for a Florentine patron. Not a pleasing example.
Beneath it, Vittore Pisano, characteristic portrait of an Este princess, in the hard, dry, accurate manner of this Veronese medallist, who borrowed from his earlier art the habit of painting profiles in strong low relief, with a plastic effect.
Perugino. St.-Sebastian. One of the loveliest examples of the Umbrian master’s later manner. Contrasted with the Madonna and St. Rose, it shows the distance covered by art during the painter’s lifetime. Observe its greater freedom and knowledge of anatomy. St. Sebastian, bound as usual to a pillar in a ruined temple, is pierced through with arrows. Face, figure, and expression are unusually fine for Perugino. Sebastian was the great saint for protection against the plague, and pictures containing him are almost always votive offerings under fear of that pestilence. Many in this gallery. The face here is finer than in any other presentation I know, except Sodoma’s in the Uffizi at Florence.
258. Lombard or Piedmontese School. Annunciation. An unusual treatment ; the Ma-donna, as always, kneels at a prie-dieu, and starts away, alarmed and timid, at the apparition of the Angel Gabriel. The action, as usual, takes place in a loggia, but the angel is represented as descending in flight through the air, an extremely uncommon mode of depicting him. He bears the white lily of the Annunciation. The other details are conventional. Contrast with this subsequent Annunciations in this gallery. On the left are St. Augustin and St. Jerome; on the right, St. Stephen, bearing on his head, as often, the stones of his martyrdom, accompanied by St. Peter Martyr, the Dominican, with the knife in his head. Both saints carry palms of martyrdom. A good picture in a hard, dry, local manner.
Now cross over to the opposite side of the room, beginning at the bottom, in order to preserve the chronological sequence.
196. School of Giotto. Madonna in Glory, with angels. Compare this treatment carefully with Cimabue’s great picture close by, in order to notice the advance in art made in the inter-val. The subject and general arrangement are the same, but observe the irregularity in the placing of the angels, and the increased knowledge of anatomy and expression.
Close by are several other Giottesque pictures, all of which should be closely examined especially 425, Vanni, the same subject, for comparison. The little Giottesque Death of St. Bernard, in particular, is a characteristic example or type of a group which deals in the same manner with saintly obsequies. All of them will suggest explanations of later pictures. In all these cases the saint lies on a bier in the foreground, surrounded by mourning monks and ecclesiastics. The keynote was struck by Giotto’s fresco of the Death of St. Francis at Santa Croce in Florence.
187. Agnolo Gaddi. Annunciation ; a characteristic example. Note the loggia, and the angel with the lily; thé introduction of a second angel, however, is a rare variation from the type. In the corner is the Father despatching the Holy Spirit. Attitude of the Madonna characteristic ; study carefully. No subject sheds more light on the methods of early art than the Annunciation. It always takes place in an arcade the Madonna is almost always to the right of the picture: and prie-dieu, book, and bed are frequent accessories.
666. Quaint little Florentine picture of St. Nicolas, throwing three purses of gold as a dowry inside the house of a poor and starving nobleman.
Next to it, unnumbered, Gregory the Great sees the Angel of the Plague sheathing his sword on the Castle of St. Angelo, so called from this vision.
494. St. Jerome in the Desert ; lion, skull, crucifix, rocks, cardinal’s hat, all characteristic of the subject. In the foreground, a Florentine lily ; in the background, Christ and the infant Baptist, patron of Florence ; background, left side, St. Augustin and the angel who tries to empty the sea into a hole made with a bucket, a well-known allegory of the attempt of the finite to comprehend the Infinite. Look out elsewhere for such minor episodes.
Fra Angelico. Martyrdom of Sts. Cosmo and Damian, the holy physicians, and (therefore) > patron saints of the Medici family ; a characteristic example of the saintly friar’s colouring in small subjects. These two Medici saints are naturally frequent in Florentine art.
662. Fra Angelico. Story of the death of St. John Baptist. Three successive episodes represented in the same picture. The lithe figure of the daughter of Herodias, dancing, is very characteristic.
166. Battle scene, by Paolo Uccello. Showing vigorous efforts at mastery of perspective and foreshortening, as yet but partially successful. The wooden character of the horses is conspicuous. Paolo Uccello was one of the group of early scientific artists, who endeavoured to improve their knowledge of optics and of the sciences ancillary to painting.
199. Benozzo Gozzoli. Glory of St. Thomas Aquinas, the great Dominican teacher. This is an apotheosis of scholasticism, in the person of its chief representative. On the right and left stand Aristotle and Plato, the heathen philosophers, in deferential attitudes, recognising their master. Beneath his feet is Guillaume de St. Amour, a vanquished heretic. Below the entire Church, — pope, cardinals, doctors, — receiving instruction from St. Thomas. Above, the Eternal Father signifying His approval in a Latin inscription, surrounded by the Evangelists with their symbols, angel, winged lion, bull, eagle. The inscription imports, “Thomas has well spoken of Me.” The style is archaic : the council is supposed to be that of Agnani, presided over by Pope Alexander IV. Among the celestial personages, notice St. Paul, Moses, and others. Pictures of this double sort, em-bracing scenes in heaven and on earth, are common in Italy.
Beneath it (287), part 2. Pesello. St. Cosmo and St. Damian affixing the leg of a dead Moor to a wounded Christian, on whom they have been compelled to practise amputation. The costumes are the conventional ones for these saints. Remember them. This astounding miracle is often represented at Florence : the dead man’s leg grew on the living one.
182. Fra Angelico. A Coronation of the Virgin, painted for a Dominican church at Fiesole. In the foreground, St. Louis of France, with a crown of fleur-de-lis ; St. Zenobius, Bishop of Florence, with the lamb of the Baptist on his crosier (indicating his see) ; St. Mary Magdalen, in red, with long yellow hair (so almost always), and (her symbol) the box of ointment ; St. Catherine with her wheel ; St. Agnes, with her lamb, and others. Above St. Louis stands St. Dominic, founder of Fra Angelico’s order, recognisable by his robes, with his red star and white lily (the usual attributes) ; beneath him, a little to the right, St. Thomas Aquinas, with a book sending forth rays of light, to signify his teaching function. Near him St. Francis. Other saints, such as St. Lawrence with his gridiron, and St. Peter Martyr, the Dominican, with his wounded head, must be left to the spectator. In the back-ground, choirs of angels. Beneath, in the predella, the history of St. Dominic (marked by a red star) ; Pope Innocent in a dream sees him sustaining the falling Church (a Dominican variant of the story of St. Francis in the Giotto, at the end) : he receives his commission from St. Peter and St. Paul ; he restores to life the young man Napoleon, killed by a fall from a horse (seen to left) ; he converts heretics and burns their books ; he is fed with his brethren by angels in his convent at Rome; and his death and apotheosis. This picture deserves most careful study, say two- hours. It is one of Fra Angelico’s finest easel paintings (his best are frescoes), and it is full of interest for its glorification of the Dominicans. Compare the St. Thomas Aquinas with Benozzo Gozzoli’s: and remember in studying the predella that St. Dominic founded the Inquisition. The tender painting of this lovely work needs no commendation.
222. School of Filippo Lippi. Madonna and angels, characteristic of the type of this painter and his followers.
Above it, Neri di Bicci. Madonna, very wooden. He was a belated Giottesque, who turned out such antiquated types by hundreds in the fifteenth century.
School of Benozzo Gozzoli. Madonna and Child. On the left, St. Cosmo and St. Damian, with pens and surgeons’ boxes ; St. Jerome, with stone, lion, and cardinal’s hat ; his pen and book denote him as translator of the Vulgate. On the right, St. John Baptist (representing Florence) ; St. Francis with the stigmata ; St. Lawrence. The combination of saints shows the picture to have been painted in compliment to Lorenzo de’ Medici.
Minor subjects around it are worthy of study.
Now cross over the room again. You come at once upon four pictures of nearly the same size, painted for the court of the Gonzaga family at Mantua. Allegorical subjects, intended for the decoration of a hall or boudoir. Most of those pictures we have hitherto examined have been. sacred : we now get an indication of the nascent Renaissance taste for myth and allegory.
429. Perugino. Combat of Love and Chastity. A frequent subject for such situations, showing Perugino at his worst. Compare it with the other three of the series.
253. Mantegna. Wisdom conquering the Vices. A characteristic but unpleasing example of this great Paduan painter. Admirable in anatomy, drawing, and perspective : poor in effect. Observe the festoons in the background, which are favourites with the artist and his school.
252. Mantegna. The amours of Mars and Venus discovered by Vulcan. A beautiful composition. The guilty pair, with a couch, stand on a mountain, representing Parnassus, accompanied by Cupid. Below, exquisite group of the nine Muses dancing (afterward imitated by Guido). To the left, Apollo with his lyre, as musician. On the right, Mercury and Pegasus. In the background, the injured Vulcan discovering the lovers. This splendid specimen of early Renaissance art is one of Mantegna’s finest. Study it in detail, and compare with the other three which it accompanies. Observe the life and movement in the dancing Muses : also, the growing Renaissance love for the nude, exemplified in the Venus.
154. Costa. The Court of Isabella d’Este. The meaning of the figures is now undecipherable, but the general character indicates peace, and devotion to literature, science, and art. A fine example of the Ferrarese master.
Between these four, ** Mantegna, (251). Madonna della Vittoria, a most characteristic picture, painted for Giovanni Francesco Gonzaga, Marquis of Mantua, to commemorate his victory over Charles VIII. of France. The Madonna is enthroned under a most characteristic canopy of fruit and flowers, with pendants of coral and other decorative adjuncts. On the left, Gonzaga himself, kneeling in gratitude, a ruffianly face, well painted. On the right, St. Elizabeth, mother of the Baptist, with St. John Baptist himself, representing the marquis’s wife. Behind, the patron saints of Mantua, who assisted in the victory : St. Michael the Archangel (the warrior saint, a most noble figure), St. Andrew (Mantegna’s name-saint), St. Longinus, who pierced the side of Christ, and St. George. The whole is exquisitely beautiful. The detail deserves long and attentive study. The reliefs on the pedestal are characteristic. From the church of the same name, erected in commemoration of the victory (of the Taro). I will return hereafter at greater length to this lovely picture.
Above, to the left (* 418), Cosimo Tura. Pieta, or body of Christ wept over by the Madonna and angels. In drawing and colouring a characteristic example of this harsh, but very original and powerful, Ferrarese master. You will come hereafter on many Pietas. Compare them all, and note the attitude and functions of the angels.
Cross over again to the opposite side. (183) Botticelli. Round Madonna and angels, very characteristic as to the drawing, but inferior in technique to most of his works.
221. Filippo Lippi. Madonna in Glory, with angels. The roundness of the faces, especially in the child angels, is very characteristic. At her feet, two Florentine patron saints. The absence of symbols makes them difficult to identify, but I think they represent St. Zenobius and St. Antonine. Very fine.
184. Botticelli. Madonna and Child, with St. John of Florence. The wistful expressions strike the key note of this painter. Compare with nameless Florentine Madonna of the same school above it.
220. Fra Filippo Lippi. Nativity. Worthy of careful study, especially for the accessories : St. Joseph, the stall and bottle, the saddle, ox and ass, and wattles, ruined temple, etc., which reappear in many similar pictures. Not a favourable example of the master. Beneath it, little fragments with St. Peter Martyr, Visitation, Christ and Magdalen, meeting of Francis and Dominic, and St. Paul the Hermit. An odd conglomeration, whose meaning cannot now be deciphered. The ruined temple, frequently seen in Nativities and Adorations of the Magi, typifies the downfall of Paganism before the advance of Christianity.
Beside it, Ghirlandajo. Portrait of bottle-nosed man and child. Admirable and characteristic.
202. Ghirlandajo. Visitation. Probably the master’s finest easel picture. Splendid colour. Attitudes of the Madonna and St. Elizabeth characteristic of the type. The scene habitually takes place in front of a portal, as here, with the heads of the main actors more or less silhouetted against the arch in the background. At the sides, Mary Salome, and “the other Mary.” Such saints are introduced merely as spectators : they need not even be contemporary : they are included in purely ideal groupings. At Florence, in. a similar scene, the as yet unborn St. John the Baptist stands by as an assessor.
185. Venus and Cupid, of the school of Botticelli. Very pleasing.
347. Cosimo Rosselli. Madonna in an almond-shaped glory (mandorla) of red and blue cherubs. On the left, the Magdalen ; on the right, St. Bernard, to whom she appeared, writing down his vision ; about, adoring angels. A characteristic example of this harsh Florentine painter.
156. We come at once upon the High Renaissance in Lorenzo di Credi’s beautiful Virgin and Child, flanked by St. Julian and St. Nicholas. Observe the three balls of gold in the corner by the latter’s feet, representative of the three purses thrown to the nobleman’s daughters. Notice also the Renaissance architecture and decorations. In pictures of this class, the saints to accompany the Madonna were ordered by the person giving the commission ; the artist could only exercise his discretion as to the grouping. Notice how this varies with the advance of the Renaissance : at first stiffly placed in pairs, the saints finally form a group with characteristic action. The execution of this. lovely work shows Lorenzo as one of the finest artists of his period.
70. Bianchi, a rare Ferrarese master. Ma-donna enthroned, with saints. The angel on the step is characteristically Ferrarese, as are also the reliefs and architecture.
467. Ascetic figure of San Giovanni di Capistrano.
435. School of. Perugino. Little Madonna, in an almond-shaped glory of cherubs. The shape belongs to Christ, or saints, ascending into glory.
Next it, front of a chest, containing the story of Europa and the bull. Several episodes are combined in a single picture. To the extreme left, the transformed lover, like the prince in a fairy tale. Most gracefully treated.
61. Bellini. Madonna and Child, between St. Peter and St. Sebastian a plague picture. These half-length Madonnas are very characteristic of Venetian art of the period. The Madonna’s face and strong neck also very Venetian. Observe them as the type on which Titian’s are modelled. Look long at this soft and melting picture. The gentle, noble face, the dainty dress, the beautiful painting of the nude in the St. Sebastian, are all redolent of the finest age of Venetian painting.
Above it, a good Tura. Compare with previous one.
60. School of Gentile Bellini. Venetian ambassador received at Cairo. Oriental tinge frequent at Venice. This gate can still be recognised at Cairo. The figures are all portraits, and the painter probably accompanied the ambassador, Domenico Trevisano.
Beneath it (59), two fine portraits by Gentile Bellini.
664. Characteristic little Montagna. Angels at the base of a Madonna now destroyed. Compare the Bianchi almost opposite. Such angels are frequent in the school of Bellini.
152. Attributed to Cima. Madonna En-throned, with St. John Baptist and the Magdalen. These lofty thrones and landscape backgrounds of the Friuli country are frequent with Cima and Venetian painters of his period.
113. Carpaccio. Preaching of St. Stephen. One of a series of the life of St. Stephen, now scattered. The saint is in deacon’s robes, as usual ; Oriental costumes mark the intercourse of Venice with the East. Observe the architecture, a graceful compound of Venetian and Oriental.
Over the doorway, fresco of God the Father, in an almond-shaped glory, from the Villa Magliana. Purchased as a Raphael, probably by Lo Spagna.
Return frequently to this room and study it deeply. It will give you the key to all the others.
Now traverse the Salon Carré and enter the Salle Duchâtel. On the right wall are two exquisite frescoes by Luini, removed entire from walls in Milan. To the left, the Adoration of the Magi, exquisitely tender and graceful ; study it closely as an example both of painter and subject, noting the ages and attitudes of the three kings, the youngest (as usual) a Moor, and the exquisite face and form of the Madonna. To the right, a Nativity, equally characteristic. Look long at them. Between, Christ blessing, not quite so beautiful ; and Genii with grapes, an antique motive. Above are three other frescoes of the school of Luini, not so fine. Centre, Annunciation, the Ma-donna separated (as often) from the angel by a lily. The Madonna never approaches the angel, and is usually divided by a wall or barrier.
On the screen by the door, good portraits by Antonio Moro.
Other side of door (680), Madonna and Child, with the donors of the picture, by Hans Memling-. This beautiful Flemish picture well represents the characteristics of Flemish as opposed to Italian art. Notice the want of ideality in the Virgin and Child, contrasted with the admirable portraiture of the donors, the chief of whom is introduced by his name-sake, St. James, recognisable by his staff and scallop-shell. The female donors, several of whom are Dominican nuns, are similarly introduced by their founder, St. Dominic, whose black and white robes and star-like halo serve to identify him. Observe the exquisite finish of the hair and all the details. Study this work for the Flemish spirit.
At the far end of the room are two pictures by Ingres, marking the interval covered by French art during the lifetime of that great painter. To the left, OEdipus and the Sphinx, produced in the classical period of the master’s youth, while he was still under the malign influence of David. On the right, La Source, perhaps the most exquisitely virginal delineation of the nude ever achieved in painting.