OIL PAINTING: The Ray, 1728
The painting - The Ray by Chardin is one of the artist's diploma pieces, on the occasion of his reception into the Academie royale de Peinture et de Sculpture in 1728.
The rich quality of the paint surfacein The Ray, which is in perfect condition, has been revealed by the recent cleaning of the varnish. The picture is exceptionally well preserved for a work by Chardin; Chardin paintings often suffered from too heavy a use of oil with his pigment. Perhaps this one owes its good condition to the fact that it dates from his early days, when he was applying himself to improving his technique by creating a chef-d'oeuvre carefully executed according to the best principles of true craftsmanship. Later, he trusted too much to his inspiration, and yielded to his passion for worked-up impasto.