VINCENT, François-André
(b. 1746, Paris, d. 1816, Paris)

Zeuxis Choosing his Models for the Image of Helen from among the Girls of Croton

Oil on canvas, 102 x 137 cm
Private collection

This painting was exhibited at the Salon of 1789, together with Jacques-Louis David's The Lictors Returning to Brutus the Bodies of his Sons. Both David and Vincent had received their commissions from D'Angiviller, as Surintendant des Bâtiments the responsible officer for selecting those eligible for Crown patronage.

The account of Zeuxis choosing his models is taken from Cicero. Having been commissioned to paint a portrait of Helen of Troy for the Temple of Jupiter at Crotona, the famous Greek artist Zeuxis had to seek the most perfect characteristics from five of the greatest beauties of the city.

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