Camille de Boissieu
24.2 cm x 18 cm (9 1/2 in. x 7 1/16 in.)
Jean-Jacques de Boissieu
(Lyon, 1736 - 1810, Lyon)
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Karen G. and Dr. Elgin W. Ware, Jr. Collection, 1999
This is a loving memorial tribute by Boissieu to his brother, a doctor, Camille de Boissieu, who died in the year the artist created the print. Camille had an illustrious career before his untimely death at age thirty-six. He received his doctorate from Montpellier in 1755, and was distinguished for his devotion during an epidemic that ravished Mâcon in 1768. In 1769, his book on antiseptics was published, and his book on heating and cooling methods (probably based on the humors) was published post-mortem in 1772.
Jean-Jacques de Boissieu was a pioneer of the return to pure, painterly etching in the late eighteenth century. This is a rare image, printed in a small edition, it was obviously intended for an intimate circle of family and close friends. The lack of a printed inscription further indicates that it was intended for a small audience to whom its subject and context needed no explanation