Ferdinand Decap
'Portrait of Ferdinand Decap' by Paul Leroy sold by Elliott Fine Art.

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It depicts Ferdinand Decap, a fellow painter who studied with Leroy at the studio of Alexander Cabanel in Paris’ Académie des Beaux-Arts. Shown wearing hoop earrings and a loose canvas shirt, Decap is dressed possibly in studio props.

Prepared for travel

Leroy would go on to visit Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria, but this portrait, painted in 1882 predates the beginning of his travels by three years.

Dealer Will Elliott of Elliott Fine Art included the portrait in the exhibition The Belle Époque: 1870- 1914, where it was offered for £18,000 and bought by a UK private collector. Works by Émile Friant and Bruno Hoppe were among those that also went into private hands from the same show.

Dealers exhibited at galleries around the capital during LAW which ran from December 3-10, though it focused as usual on Mayfair and St James’s. The commercial side was balanced by an academic programme including the third LAW symposium, Jewish Dealers and the European Art Market c.1850-1930, which took place on the organisation’s digital platform.

With cases of the Omicron variant of coronavirus on the rise and some travel restrictions still in place, some participants noticed a lower footfall and fewer sales than in previous editions of the event.