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New Discoveries about "Young Girl Reading" by Jean-Honoré Fragonard

John Delaney, senior imaging scientist, scientific research department, National Gallery of Art; Yuriko Jackall, assistant curator, department of French paintings, National Gallery of Art; and Michael Swicklik, senior paintings conservator, National Gallery of Art. Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s Young Girl Reading (c. 1770) is one of the most beloved works at the National Gallery of Art for its rapid brushwork, bold use of color, and delightful subject matter. New research conducted at the Gallery has shed an entirely different light on this painting, revealing an original figure that is clearly related to a series of 18 so-called “fantasy figures” by Fragonard—rapidly painted, similarly colored compositions of identical dimensions. In this lecture, delivered on June 15, 2015, as part of the Works in Progress series, John Delaney, Yuriko Jackall, and Michael Swicklik share ongoing technical and art-historical research on Young Girl Reading and its associated works.

Released: July 28, 2015