Musée National Eugène Delacroix
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3 account books

Eugène Delacroix (1798-1863)

© Musée Eugène Delacroix / C. Adam

Eugène Delacroix
(1798-1863)

MD 1997-21 et 22
1854-1859
cover notebooks
Purchased with the participation of M. Norbert Ducrot Granderye
"in memory of Charles Granderye, commander of the Imperial guard, and of Mme, born Marie Doublet de Ferrière", 1997
in-12°

Saved carefully by Achille Piron — a childhood friend of Delacroix, who named him his executor and sole legatee — with virtually all of the papers sorted at the painter’s death, these three small account books provide information on the everyday life of the man and the artist. The major part of the archives, which remained with Piron’s descendants, was sold at public auction in late 1997.

 

The three notebooks

One of the notebooks, which is 56 pages long with a red hardback cover, contains the households accounts from 5 September to 24 December 1857, with detailed daily expenses for food, household items, postage, and transportation, along with delightful notes concerning the small sums given to “Monsieur” or “Me Jenny,” and a day-by-day list of "recipes."

The two others primarily concern the work for the Chapelle des Saints-Anges in Saint-Sulpice, with a 7-page list of Delacroix’s expenses dating from 2 June 1854 to 1 July 1858 and kept by Pierre Andrieu, who assisted Delacroix on this project. There were several types of expenses: heating, hardware items, and paint, but also cigars! It also indicates when work started up again after interruptions.

The third notebook, with a green plastic cover and 83 pages, including several loose pages, begins with a detailed account of the "paints delivered by M. Haro" (dark madder lake, vermilion, Cassel earth, chrome green...) from whom Delacroix purchased canvases, brushes, and paint — and who also found the apartment on Rue de Furstenberg. It has entries from 24 September 1858 to June 15 1859, when the work began again. In addition to the paints used, the notebook also includes a list of expenses for wax, solvents, and rags.

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