Portrait of Madame Étienne-René Aignan Sanlot, née Marie-Rose Savalette (1745–1812)

Elisabeth Louise Vigée-Le Brun, French, 1755 - 1842



Pastel on paper pasted on canvas

Sight: 28 3/4 × 22 13/16 in. (73 × 58 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased with a gift from Julia and Richard H. Rush, Class of 1937, Tuck 1938, by exchange; the Jean and Adolph Weil Jr. 1935 Fund; a gift from William Olden, by exchange; and a gift from Ann and Joel Berson, Class of 1949, by exchange



Place Made: France, Western Europe, Europe


18th century

Object Name


Research Area


On view


Signed and dated lower left "Mlle Vigée / 1776" and inscribed on the reverse, in ink, "Made Savalete Sanlot / par Made Lebrun" (according to previous cataloging; now covered by a modern backing, per Sotheby's listing)


One of the foremost artists in late-18th-century France, Élisabeth-Louise Vigée Le Brun gained fame for her portraits of the nobility and royalty at the cusp of the French Revolution. This portrait, which was made early in her career, instead features the wife of a tax collector, a vilified profession that nevertheless offered upward economic mobility for some bourgeoisie. Completed in pastel, a popular medium for fashionable women’s portraits in this period, the drawing offers a softness to her sitter, who gazes confidently ahead. Marie-Rose wears a loose-fitting dress and powdered hairstyle, styles popularized by Queen Marie Antoinette. Her sartorial choices signal the Sanlot family’s social ambitions and wealth. This portrait was made shortly after Marie-Rose’s marriage and a few months before the birth of her first child.

Written in 2024 by Elizabeth Rice Mattison, Andrew W. Mellon Curator of Academic Programming and Curator of European Art

Exhibition History

Harrington Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hamsphire, February 12, 2024.


Étienne-René Aignan Sanlot and his wife Marie-Rose, née Marie-Rose Savalette, Paris; by descent to their son Adrien-Gustave-Thibaut Sanlot-Baguenault (1782 –1854), Paris; by descent René Sanlot-Baguenault (1822–1888), Paris; by descent to Gabrielle Anne Marie-Thérèse Sanlot-Baguenault (1851–1931), Madame Roger de Vanssay (1849–1917), Paris; by descent to Guy de Vanssay, Vicomte de Vanssay (1883–1959), Château de la Barre, Conflans-sur-Anille, France; by descent Raymond de Vanssay (1921–1997), Château de la Barre, Conflans-sur-Anille, France; by whom sold Sotheby’s, Monaco, 15-16 June 1990, lot 490 as 18th century, French school; sold to anonymous private collector, France; sold Eric Turquin, Paris, 2004; sold Sotheby’s, New York, 24 January 2008, lot 361; where purchased Al Thani Collection, Hôtel Lambert, Paris; by whom sold Sotheby’s, Paris 13 October 2022, lot 561; where acquired by the present collection.

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