ID number: BIRBI-54.6
Institution: The Barber Institute of Fine Arts
Artist / Maker: Ingres, Jean Auguste Dominique (1780-1867)
Title / Object name: Paolo and Francesca
Object type: Painting
Date made: about 1814/20
Materials: Oil on canvas
Measurements: 35 x 28 cm unframed; 51.5 x 44.5 x 9.5 cm framed
Provenance: Jean-Alexandre Coraboeuf; purchased by Henry Lapauze; Lapauze sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, 21 June 1929 (lot 55); Guarnati; anonymous sale, Galerie Charpentier, Paris, 30 May 1949 (lot 27); purchased from Marlborough Fine Art Galleries in 1954 for £3,000.
The story of the short and tragic love affair between Paolo Malatesta and Francesca da Rimini is told in Dante's Inferno, canto v: 127-138. Here, the deformed Lanciotto, brother of Paolo and husband to Francesca, is seen about to kill them as, fired by their reading of an Arthurian romance together, Paolo attempts a first kiss. The picture is one of a group of small, brightly coloured "troubadour" works with medieval or Renaissance subjects which Ingres painted, mainly between 1814 and 1820. There are several versions of it.
Inscriptions / Translations: Signed I.I.: J. INGRES
Notes: Exhibited: 'Ingres', Galeries Georges Petit, Paris, 1911, no. 25; 'Exposition centennale de l'art français', St Petersburg, 1911; 'Exhibition of French Art', National Museum, Copenhagen, 1917, no. 65; 'David and Ingres', Springfield Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, Mass., USA, 1939, no. 23; 'Exhibition to Commemorate the 7th Centenary of the Birth of Dante', Palazzo Venezia, Rome, 1965; 'In pursuit of perfection: the art of J.-A.-D. Ingres', J.B. Speed Art Museum, Louisville, 1983, no. 9; Paris 1993; Ireland 2007