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date: 08 April 2020

Coypel, Antoinelocked

Extract

French, 17th – 18th century, male.

Born 11 April 1661, in Paris; died 7 January 1722, in Paris.

Painter, pastellist, engraver, decorative designer, draughtsman. History painting, religious subjects, allegorical subjects, mythological subjects, portraits, genre scenes.

Antoine Coypel was the most famous artist of the Coypel family, though he was not perhaps the most talented. He was the son of Noël Coypel and assumed his father's role as director of the French academy in Rome in 1672. He began to demonstrate artistic leanings when he was just a boy, and this caught the attention of Bernini, who became his mentor. However, the rapid success he enjoyed as a young man, along with the flattery heaped upon him by self-interested people wishing to curry favour with his father, had a negative effect on his artistic temperament. When he returned to France he found that he already had a reputation in his homeland as a sort of prodigal child. Soon after his return to France in 1681, he was admitted into the Académie: he was just 20 years old at the time. In 1710 he was appointed director of drawings and paintings of the king's Cabinet. In 1714 he was made a director of the Académie. In 1715 he became first painter to the king. And in 1717 he obtained his letters patent of nobility....

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