35.5 x 46.3cm sheet; 65.0 x 74.6 x 3.5cm frame
Fragonard spent almost six years in Italy and this drawing takes as its subject an episode from the Italian writer Tasso's epic 'Jerusalem delivered'. Having fallen in love with the Christian warrior Rinaldo, Armida entices him into her enchanted garden to prevent him returning to the war. Lully's opera 'Armide' was performed in Paris in 1761, and this perhaps partly inspired Fragonard. It is not certain whether this drawing - and its pendant 'Rinaldo in the enchanted forest' - were done before or after the two oil paintings of the same composition. This wash drawing gives the effect of a painting. Fragonard was the typical Rococo painter of lighthearted and gallant subjects during the reigns of Louis XV and Louis XVI. The French Revolution put an end to his patrons and Fragonard died almost forgotten.
A. Ananoff, The Connoisseur Jan 1968, 'Drawings by J.H. Fragonard for "Jerusalem Delivered"', pg.12-16, London, Jan 1968, 13 (illus.). figure 4
Alexandre Ananoff, L'oeuvre dessine´ de Jean-Honore´ Fragonard (1732-1806), Paris, 1961-1970, vol.3, 1968. cat.no. 1702, fig. 435
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of New South Wales Annual Report 1994 1994, Sydney, 1994, 44.
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Great gifts, great patrons: an exhibition celebrating private patronage of the Gallery 1994, Sydney, 1994. no catalogue numbers
Art Gallery of New South Wales, The James Fairfax collection of old masters 1992, Domain, 1992. no catalogue numbers
Richard Beresford and Peter Raissis, The James Fairfax collection of old master paintings, drawings and prints 2003, Domain, 2003, 7 (colour illus.), 84-87, 85 (colour illus.). cat.no. 22, illustration on page 7 is a detail
Jean-Pierre Cuzin, Jean-Honore´ Fragonard: life and work: complete catalogue of the oil paintings, New York, 1988, 252. note 6
Renée Free, Forest and field: from Claude to the Barbizon School 1995, 'Rococo landscape', pg. 2-3, Domain, 1995, 3, 6.
Renée Free, The Art Gallery of New South Wales collections, 'The Western Heritage, Renaissance to Twentieth Century', pg. 108-172, Sydney, 1994, 123 (colour illus.).
Galerie Georges Petit, Chardin et Fragonard 1907, Paris, 1907, 12. cat.no. 162
Pierre Rosenberg, Fragonard 1987, Paris, 1987, 159-160, 160 (illus.). figure 1, as whereabouts unknown
Denys Sutton, Fragonard 1980, 1980. under no. 37
Editor Unknown (Editor), Gazette des Beaux-Arts Mar 1994, 'Chronique des Arts' suppliment, Unknown, Mar 1994, 34 (illus.). no. 145
Chardin et Fragonard, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, 1907–1907
The James Fairfax collection of old masters, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 25 Apr 1992–14 Jun 1992
Great gifts, great patrons, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 17 Aug 1994–19 Oct 1994
Forest and field: from Claude to the Barbizon School, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 14 Jul 1995–17 Sep 1995
The James Fairfax collection of old master paintings, drawings and prints, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 17 Apr 2003–20 Jul 2003
Old Europe: Prints & drawings from the collection 1500-1800, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 03 Jun 2006–06 Aug 2006