The Passion of Collecting Academic Nudes

Join me as we explore my collection of Academic Nudes from the 18th, 19th, and Early 20th Centuries and serendipitous finds in the Museum, Art Auction, and Gallery world......examples from the Golden Age of the European Academie

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Charles-Nicolas Cochin, The Younger (1715-1790): Male Nudes - Engravings, ca. 1770

Portrait of Charles-Nicolas Cochin (purported)


Several days ago I programmed an automatic bid on a series of four 18th century intaglio prints of Academic Male Nudes. The price was very low, considering the age of the prints, so I grabbed them for my collection. They are by the famous French print maker Charles-Nicolas Cochin, the Younger (1715-1790) and date from 1770. They were probably meant for inclusion in an academic art program and meant to be copied by students, considering the plate number at the top right. It is amazing to me how cheaply these little masterpieces (to my eye) can be bought. The smaller editions seem to demand far less than the larger red chalk prints from the same period.

Charles-Nicolas Cochin the Younger, was born in 1715 in Paris and is regarded as one of the most influential people in the French Art scene in the 18th century. He was a member of the Paris Academy's board of directors and operated as an art critic during the transition from rococo to the advent of classicism. He came from a famous family of artists. His father, Charles-Nicolas the Elder, was a well known engraver and etcher, and his grand-father was the painter Charles Cochin. He began his artistic training in his father's workshop. In 1730 he received artistic training from J. Restout and learned copper-engraving skills from J.P LeBas. He began working on his own around 1735. In 1739 he was promoted to a position in the Menue Plaisirs, a state authority at the court of Louis XV that was responsible for the implementation, decoration, and documentation of the royal courts festivals. Cochin gained great esteem in the Parisian art scene, at the Academy, and nationally as an artist and art critic.


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