Jean-François MILLET (1814-1875) Portrait... - Lot 132 - Osenat

Lot 132
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15000 - 20000 EUR
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Result : 90 000EUR
Jean-François MILLET (1814-1875) Portrait... - Lot 132 - Osenat
Jean-François MILLET (1814-1875) Portrait of Auguste Félix Postel Pastel Signed lower left 39 x 31 cm (at sight) Bibliography: Les Normands et la mer, XXVè Congrès des sociétés historiques et archéologiques de Normandie, rep. p. 168 and p. II. Pastel, signed lower left, 15 3/8 x 12 3/16 in. Bibliography: The Normans and the Sea, XXVth Congress of Historical and Archaeological Societies of Normandy, rep. p. 168 and p. II. As early as 1841 the municipal council of Cherbourg approached Millet for the execution of the official portrait of the former mayor. Portrait painting was then the only way for the artist to gain the favour of the local society, which was keen on his own image. Executed between 1845 and 1850, usually in oil, Millet produced a remarkable series of pencil or pastel drawings for these portraits. This beautiful portrait represents Auguste Félix Postel (1817-1895), a native of Cherbourg and shipowner in Le Havre. Together with the Liais family, the Postel shipping company, a business belonging to a family that had been well known in the Cherbourg region since the late Middle Ages and had long been close to the maritime world, was the one that in the years 1865-1870 had achieved the greatest renown and opulence. Proof of this is the high price of the patent which it had to pay in those years. At the end of the Second Empire, the Cherbourg merchants had to diversify their fields of activity (forestry, chocolate and sugar production...) because France had regrouped its port trade and concentrated traffic in the major ports, the arms trade moved to the port of Le Havre. So much so that the shipowners from Cherbourg wishing to continue their activity, like Mr Postel, had to move to Le Havre. Despite this move, Félix Postel remained in close contact with his brothers who had remained in Cherbourg and this complementarity benefited them both. It was during this move that Félix Postel acquired the Château de Reville.
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