In 1832, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres painted the Portrait of Monsieur Bertin. The painting is a neoclassical masterpiece that depicts Louis-Francois Bertin, a French writer and art collector who was the director of the pro-royalist Journal des debats. Ingres combined realistic exactitude with psychological insight in his painting to create a powerful portrait that showcases Bertin’s prominence as an archetypal member of the new bourgeoisie.
The painting drew criticism for being overly opportunistic and self-congratulatory, but it remains an important work in the Louvre Museum in Paris. In addition to the painting itself, there are also sketches and studies of Bertin done by Ingres that provide insights into his creative process.
Through his depiction of Bertin, Ingres captures not only the subject’s physical likeness but also his intellectual power and influence as a prominent figure in French society during this period. With its attention to detail and innovative techniques, this portrait stands as one of Ingres’ most impressive works and testament to his artistic mastery.