Trivium Art HistoryJacques-Louis David

Portrait of the Sisters Zénaïde and Charlotte Bonaparte

Portrait of the Sisters Zénaïde and Charlotte Bonaparte, 1821 — Jacques-Louis David
129.5 cm100.6 cm

Portrait of the Sisters Zénaïde and Charlotte Bonaparte is a Neoclassical, Oil on Canvas Painting created by Jacques-Louis David in 1821. It lives at the The J. Paul Getty Museum in the United States. The image is in the Public Domain, and tagged Girl, Family, and Portraits. Source

The sisters Zénaïde and Charlotte Bonaparte, Napoleon's nieces, read a letter from their father, Joseph Bonaparte, who was exiled in the United States while they lived in Brussels, Belgium, after Napoleon's fall from power. 

Jacques-Louis David juxtaposed the sisters' personalities through their expressions and attire. The elder Zénaïde appears worldly and elegant in a low-cut black velvet dress, sitting upright and protective of her younger sister. Charlotte appears timid and reticent as she shyly raises her eyes, and her dress, a modest gray-blue silk, suits her demeanor. The exiled princesses both wear tiaras and sit on a red velvet couch embroidered with golden bees, the Bonaparte family emblem.

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