François Malepart De Beaucourt: Painting Analysis

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Elegant and charming, an 18th-century painting shows a young woman who gazes straight in front of her and holds a basket of fruits on a rural background. However, the model is different from the traditional upper-class portrait painting because she is a black slave woman. 18th-century portrait painting 's goal was to illustrate a human subject for public and private persons, or the inspiration by admiration or affection for the person. It was often necessary to state and record the family as primarily commemorating the rich and powerful historically class in portrait paintings.

However, over the time it became more common for the middle-class person to order portraits of their families and colleagues. Therefore, it was not common to illustrate someone
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He deceased in Montréal in 1794. It is possible that Beaucourt embarked for the West Indies towards the end of 1784. His best-known painting, the Slave to the still life (1786), is of Caribbean inspiration as demonstrated by the madras of, which the young woman is wearing, her necklace of grains and the basket of exotic fruits she carries in her hand. Also, some French authors claim that Beaucourt died in Guadeloupe. Although it is not, it suggests that the artist has stayed there. Another painting made at the same time, Portrait d’une femme haïtienne (1787), does not provide a clue to the painter 's place of residence.

The context of this painting breaks the Western tradition of the oil portrait, where the model is a slave, and the painter is most likely its owner. The exposure of the breast in the Portrait of a Haitian woman is used by the white master to probably display the reproductive potential of his black slave, which is a crucial parameter of the economic value of his "good." Female models of the wealthy class would not have been represented in this

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