Albert de Belleroche:
Sleeping nude on a sofa
Unmounted (ref: 5832)
Inscribed 'Drawing by Belleroche' (verso) in the hand of Julie de Belleroche, the artist's wife. Pencil
13 1/4 x 18 1/4 in. (33.5 x 46.4 cm)
Tags: Albert de Belleroche drawing pencil life drawing women
Provenance: From the collection of Count William de Belleroche; thence by descent.
Belleroche was a founder member of the Salon d'Automne, exhibiting alongside the Impressionists and associating with Emile Zola, Oscar Wilde, Albert Moore, Renoir, Degas, Helleu, Toulouse-Lautrec and John Singer Sargetn. He shared a studio with Sargent, who remained a life long friend, and taught Sargent the art of lithography. Sargent made around ten portraits of Belleroche.
Belleroche's talent as a painter was recognized by his contemporaries - Degas owned three lithographs by Belleroche and in the early 1890s the French state acquired a painting for the Luxembourg Gallery. Roger Marx, the critic who discovered Renoir, was amongst Belleroche's fervent admirers, referring to him as 'le peintre des femmes decoiffées' (Gazette de Beaux-Arts, XLX, Jan 1905).
Marx also fully acknowledged Belleroche's importance as painter-lithographer, writing in 1908: Belleroche holds a premier position in the current renaissance of lithography. No one since Eugene Carriere has equaled Belleroche's technique or his understanding of lithography. He is a master.... Indeed he is a painter-lithographer: he brings his subjects to life in moving light and shadows. His ink creates tones which reach the limits of the joyous and profound... His art, born in a daylight which is its own justification, is created from love." (Roger Marx, Peintres-lithographes Contemporains:Albert Belleroche Gazette des Beaux-Arts I, vol 39, 1908, p. 74).