This antique etching is titled “The Right Road”. The print is a photogravure of the original painting of the same name, completed by the artist in 1872. A year later the painting was exhibited in the Paris Salon of 1873. The Right Road depicts an artist on a path surrounded by the temptations of women and wine. Merle was well known for his sentimental paintings depicting biblical and moral subjects.
The quality and detail of this original antique etching is marvelous. Across the top of the image it reads Copyrighted and Published 1880 by George Barrie of Philadelphia. Within the image on the lower left you can see the artist signature Hugues Merle 1872, noting the date of the original painting. Also on the lower left below the image, its marked Painted by H. Merle along with the title The Right Road. In the lower right its marked Photogravure Goupil & Cie. In the 19th century, Goupil & Cie was one of the leading fine art and print dealers in the world. Their headquarters was in Paris, but they also had locations in New York, London, Berlin and Brussels.
Hugues Merle was born in 1823 in Saint-Marcellin, a french city located southeastern France. He was trained in the French Academic tradition and frequently exhibited in the Paris Salon, in the mid to late 1800’s. His original paintings can be found in private collections and museums around the world. He died in Paris at the age of 58.
ARTIST: Hugues Merle (French 1823-1881)
MAKER: Goupil & Cie, Photogravure
George Barrie, Publisher
MATERIALS: Photogravure framed with mat under glass.
CONDITION: Very nice condition with minor wear consistent with age. Etching has not been viewed outside of frame.
HEIGHT: 19.5 in. (50 cm)
WIDTH: 15.5 in. (39 cm)
DEPTH: 1 in. (2.6 cm)