2nd Half 19th C.
the bust length portrait of a man in half-profile with reddish hair and full beard with blue eyes dressed in black with a white collar in ,possibly, its original period giltwood frame with later added decoration, signed "Challard". The diagonal lines of the back/shoulder and his right arm lead your eye to the piercing gaze of his left eye which sits at the center of the canvas. The artist was obviously academy trained. The label on the reverse of the frame refers to Calais, a major port city in northern France.
Biography Achille-Auguste Challard was born during the first half of the nineteenth century in the town of Sens, France. Challard's hometown lies in the region of Burgundy located approximately 120 kilometers southeast of Paris. According to the Benezit Dictionary of Artists, Challard exhibited at the Paris Salon between 1868 and 1876. Thieme-Becker provides more exact dates of 1868, 1869, 1876 and 1877. Judging from the limited number of works on the market and the short span of exhibitions, the artist either died at a rather early age or decided to change careers. Due to the intimate nature of the painting it is likely to be a self-portrait, or at the very least, a portrait of one of Challard's close personal friends.