|'Holy Women' (c. 1820) by François-Joseph Navez; Musée du Louvre, Paris|
Today's choice was quickly made. I had never heard of Belgian Neoclassical painter François-Joseph Navez, born on 16 November 1787 and died on 12 October 1869 (Wikipedia doesn't give the exact dates, but Safran Arts does), but one look at the images of his paintings, I knew I didn't have to search any further. Probably the reason why I like his paintings is because they are very reminiscent of Jacques-Louis David and it turns out that he was David's pupil. After his studies in Paris, he went to Rome where he made the acquaintance of Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres, that other great Neoclassical painter who had also been a pupil of David. He was a great admirer of Ingres and his work reflected Ingres's combination of Neoclassical and Romantic style. Returning to Belgium, he became the director of the Brussels Academy. His history and genre paintings as well as his portraits display rich colours and a figurative approach typical of Neoclassicism. The painting I have chosen for today is such an example, and as you might see, even more Ingres-like than David-like. I think it is beautiful and also found a site that shows you the restauration of this artwork. But besides this painting, there are many that I like. I think that Massacre of the Innocents (1824) is really beautiful too and should maybe have deserved this post but you can't win them all.