Edouart, Augustin


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(b 1789; d 1861). French silhouettist. He moved to England in 1814 and in 1826 established himself as a silhouettist in Bath. He cut freehand in folded black paper, a method that enabled him to keep a copy. Edouart did not paint his silhouettes, but rather indicated the whites of collars and handerchiefs by ‘slashing’, i.e. cutting away parts of the black paper to expose the white mount beneath. He worked variously in London, Oxford and Cambridge, and in 1830 moved to Edinburgh, where he cut silhouettes of the court of the exiled Charles X of France; the collection of 78 portraits is now in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. Edouart subsequently spent a year in Dublin, where he cut c. 6000 portraits and published A Treatise of Silhouette Likenesses (Cork, 1835). He then moved to America for 10 years (1839-49). On his return journey his ship was wrecked, and all but 9,000 of his 200,000 duplicates were lost.

From The Grove Encyclopedia of Decorative Arts in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Decorative Arts, Furniture, and Industrial Design.

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