Eighteenth-Century Pastel Portraits

Pastel portraiture flourished in 18th-century Europe owing to the medium’s distinctive optical properties-its brilliant colors and warm glow. The powdery nature of pastel crayons allowed artists to bathe their sitters in flattering light.

This exhibition draws from a small but important group of French, Italian, German, and British pastels in the Museum’s collection. Examining works by Rosalba Carriera, Charles Antoine Coypel, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, and other leading portraitists, it explores the rising popularity of pastel in conjunction with artistic practices and technological advances of the day.


Gustavus Hamilton, 2nd Viscount Boyne, in Masquerade Costume
by Rosalba Carriera
The exhibition runs from July 26-October 29, 2017 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028.

To learn more about this exhibition, please click here.

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