Portrait of Philippe Andre Joseph Letombe
Consul General of France to the United States
By Gilles Louis Chretien (1754-1811)
In collaboration with Jean Fouquet, fl. 1781-1798
Circa 1793
Paper size 3 3/4 x 3 1/8
Plate size 3 – 2 1/2

“The physionotrace was an early precursor to the camera, using a pantograph to trace the features which were recorded onto a plate by an etching needle. This yielded a plate that could be printed from. This physionotrace, executed by the inventor [Chrétien] and his most frequent collaborator [Fouquet], is a good example of this early pre-photographic intaglio printing method and an example of one of the methods used to mechanically transpose the image to a printing plate.”–David A. Hanson Collection of the History of Photomechanical Reproduction  catalog, p. 5

Period, possibly original frame.



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