Another of the prolofic technicians of late nineteenth-century art, Dinet was a French-born painter-illustrator, with a penchant for attention-seeking titles and striking technical effects are exploited in 'The snake charmer', an orientalist painting that doubles as a touristic postcard. Exotic in its geo-graphical setting and sensational in its subject matter, it further trades on scale as a strategy to arrest the viewer. The figures are large and brilliantly coloured, seeming to spill into the gallery space. The charmer himself is consciously that, with a toothy smile and 'authentic' costume. Also noteworthy is the treatment of bright sunlight which Dinet translates into broad applications of impasto paint with practised, not to say formulaic, ease. No real attempt is made to create a composition. Rather, the cropped casualness of a photograph is suggested.
AGNSW Handbook, 1999.
Le charmeur de viperes
oil on canvas
176.5 x 180.4 cm
Signature & date
Signed and dated l.l., yellow oil "E. DINET / ...1889".
Shown in 7 exhibitions
Paris Salon, 1890, Paris Salon, Paris, 1890–1890
Salon de 1890, Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris, 1890–1890
Loan collections of oil paintings:
- Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide 1894–1894
- Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney 1894–1894
- National Gallery of Victoria [Swanston Street], Melbourne Sep 1894–Sep 1894
Exhibition of continental art, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Nov 1940–Dec 1940
An exhibition of French art at the National Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 04 Oct 1944–31 Oct 1944
Salon and Academie: the charm of tradition, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 15 Nov 1984–May 1985
Orientalism - Delacroix to Klee:
Paris Salon, Paris/France, Purchased by the AGNSW from the Paris Salon 1890
Referenced in 29 publications
Roger Benjamin, Look, 'The Romance of Arabia - Orientalism - Delacroix to Klee', pg. 14-17, Heidelberg, Dec 1997, 15 (colour illus.), 16.
Roger Benjamin, Orientalism – Delacroix to Klee, 'The Oriental Mirage', pg. 7-31, Sydney, 1997-1998, 20, 41-43, 44 (colour illus.), 45, 129 (colour illus.), 129-30.
Renée Free, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'European', pg. 36-56, Sydney, 1988, 48.
Janet Hawley, Good Weekend, 'Scenes from the Kaskah', pg. 24-30, Sydney, 1997, 27, 28 (colour illus.).
Bruce James, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'Western Collection: Paintings and Sculpture', pg. 17-77, Sydney, 1999, 50 (colour illus.).
Catalogue del l'oeuvre de Dinet, 1984, 194. cat.no. 144
An exhibition of French art at the National Art Gallery of N.S.W, Sydney, 1944. cat.no. 101
National Art Gallery of New South Wales: exhibition of continental art, Sydney, 1940. cat.no. 1
La vie de E. Dinet, 1938, 62.
Art and Australia, 'The Art of Arthur Streeton', pg. 12, Sydney, 1919, 12.
L'Art et les artistes, 1909-1910, 163-172.
(and so forth), Sydney, 1998, (colour illus.). The image appears between pages 232 and 233.
Le Salon de 1890, 1890, 84 (illus.).
Le Temps, 02 Jul 1890.
L'art francais, 28 Jun 1890. cat.no. 166 (repr. en glyptographie)
Le monde illustre, 17 May 1890, 322.
Brelaus de salons, 1890, 225.
Revue francaise et samedi réunis, 1890, 97.
L'artiste, 1890, 85.
Paris Salon, Paris, 1890, 95 (illus.).
Figaro, 1890, (illus.).
Le Salon de 1890, 1890, 86 (illus.).
Revue des deux mondes, vil 3, 1890, 925.
National Art Gallery of NSW: illustrated catalogue, Sydney, 1906, (illus.). cat.no. 77
La vie et l'oeuvre de Etienne Dinet, Paris, 1991. cat.no. 144
Images in opposition: Australian landscape painting 1801–1890, 'Contrasting lights', pg.135-154, Melbourne, 1985, 149.
Salon and Académie: the charm of tradition: a catalogue of nineteenth-century European salon works, Sydney, 1984, (illus.). no catalogue numbers
Art and Australia, 'Victorian favourites: a conversation - Elwyn Lynn and Lloyd Rees', pg. 49-56, Sydney, Spring 1984, 49, 52, 55.