DUBOIS after COURVOISIER
Fontaine ou Chateau d'Eau au Boulevard Saint Martin
Paris: Chez Basset, Md. D'Estampes, rue St. Jacques, No. 64, circa 1785. Hand-coloured line engraving. Printed on laid paper. In excellent condition with the exception of a mended tear on the bottom margin. Image size: 9 ¾ x 16 1/8 inches. Sheet size: 16 3/16 x 21 ¾ inches. Plate mark: 13 x 18 ¼ inches.
A fine view of the fountain along the Boulevard Saint Martin in Paris.
This fascinating view of the boulevard St. Martin is typical of eighteenth century perspective prints produced in England and France at the close of the eighteenth century. Although it was not meant to be viewed through an optical device, this picturesque image employs the same coloring and composition of other contemporary vue d'optiques. As well as being a beautiful image, this lovely view provides a fascinating glimpse of Parisian life. While the gentry enjoy themselves strolling along the tree-lined pavements, a street cleaner is hard at work cleaning the cobbled road with a large movable barrel of water. The sides of the road have been cleared for faster traffic while the center of the roadway is dotted with slower moving carriages. This charming image was most likely produced as part of a suite of views of Paris and its environs. Basset was a prolific publisher who printed a vast array of different material from views to decorative genre prints.