Little Boys Blue

F. X. Vispre


Although the boys are unnamed, these engaging portraits have stayed together so it seems safe to assume that they are brothers. Both are wearing royal blue coats over shirts with wide frill-edged collars. The younger boy still wears his hair in long natural curls whilst his brother’s has been cropped.

Both portraits are in fine condition and are set in the original papier-mâché frames – the frames are only 4mm deep which is considerably thinner than the norm. They also have unusual brass hangers plus all the usual nibbles to the edges. One portrait is backed with the artist’s trade card used whilst Vispré was working at Mr Clarke’s in Cambridge during the 1790s.

Born in Besançon, France in about 1730, François Xavier Vispré arrived in London in 1760 where he exhibited intermittingly between 1760 and 1789 having also spent a few years in Dublin. In addition to miniatures, he drew pastel and oil portraits, was a printmaker and the author of a dissertation on the cultivation of vineyards in England. Also an artist, his brother Victor specialised in painting still lifes of fruit on glass.

Item Ref. 7064

Size: framed, 132 x 116mm (5⅛ x 4½")