Charles Nègre began his career in the arts at only 17 years old. In 1837, Nègre took drawing classes in Aix-en-Provence, and from 1839, he began to study painting in Paris under the direction of Paul Delaroche, Drolling (this example is one of his drawings from the Drolling studio), and finally Ingres, before establishing his own studio at 21 Quai Bourbon on the Île Saint-Louis. Delaroche encouraged use of photography among his students for research for painting. Out of all the students of Delaroche who took up photography, Negre was by far the most gifted at painting and continued to paint while practicing photography. Nègre was admitted to the l’Ecole des beaux-arts in 1841 but was unsuccessful in the contests for the Prix de Rome in 1845. He exhibited paintings in various Salons until 1853.In about 1844 Nègre learned the practice of making daguerreotypes at a demonstration at the Institute de France, and in about 1848 he began experimenting with paper photography processes. His rare early studies included some nudes. Provenance: the Nègre family, Grasse, France.
Sketch on recto and verso of sheet.