Modèles de Jean-Antoine Fraisse pour les manufactures du duc de Bourbon
In the beginning of the XVIIIth century, the taste for the Asian arts in France developped with the Indian Company’s importations. Porcelain, precious fabrics, furniture and lacquered objects are common in the aristocratic houses. The Fraisse’s book is published in 1735 under these circumstances. Born in Grenoble around 1680, Jean-Antoine Fraisse is certified as an embroiderer and a painter in this city until 1718. In 1729, he works as a painter in the Chantilly castle in the service of Louis-Henri, Duke of Bourbon, Prince of Condé (1692-1740). In 1735, Fraisse publishes in Paris a collection of engravings after Persian, Indian, Chinese and Japanese originals, named “The Book of Chinese Drawings” and dedicated to the Duke of Bourbon. There are only thirteen copies of this book including three coloured by hand. According to the dedication to the Prince written by Fraisse to preface the book, the engravings depict the patterns found in the Prince’s collection of Asian art. As his contemporaries, the Prince is interested by the taste of Asia. In his Chantilly castle, he collects and creates Chinese and Japanese porcelain, lacquered furniture and rich floral indiennes. Fraisse copies these original pieces from the Prince’s collection and offers sources of inspiration and models to the porcelain and indiennes makers in the service of the Prince. This rare book is crucial to discover the taste for exoticism in the early XVIIIth century. Our book is a facsimile of the copy kept in Chantilly with an analysis from the curator Nicole Garnier.