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Finished in 1880 and now in possession of private collectors through the Christie’s Auction house since 2001, the Pelt Merchant of Cairo is in many ways an emblematic Jean-Léon Gérôme painting, showcasing many of his preferred subject matters and personal belongings. Further, it remains in line with Gérôme’s penchant for Orientalism and the portrayal of salespeople from the East.
It portrays a young and handsome peddler displaying his wares: a beautiful tiger pelt and a Saracen helmet with mail neck guard, the former one of Gérôme’s favorite subject matters in his early career, and the latter a beloved personal belonging acquired in his travels. The pelt covers most of the seller’s body, from below his shoulders to his ankle, leaving only the right foot visible underneath it.
Surrounding him is a Muslim Egypt urban setting, with trellised windows under which the artist signs his name, high walkways, and hanging building extensions. In that setting another peddler advertises his wares, an assortment of pots and pans, calling the attention of nearby people. There is a contrast between the peddler in the background making himself noticed and the nonchalance of the pelt merchant, who leisurely lounges presenting his wares with an air of smugness about him as if he was sure of their quality and desirability.
The pelt merchant’s pose reinforces that nonchalance, posing in a resting contrapposto which not only makes him look at ease but also showcases Gérôme’s classical influence, referring to the preferred pose of the great sculptors and painters to instill movement to their subject matter. Interestingly enough, the painter uses that dynamic pose to reinforce the relaxation and naturality of the pelt merchant’s stance.
As for the composition, which arguably is largely influenced by the work of Rembrandt, who Gérôme both criticized and idealized, every element of the painting, while sumptuous and decorative in its own right, is subordinated to the overall composition. From the buildings to the distant peddler, from the pelt merchant’s hand holding the helmet to the draping of the tiger pelt, they all work together to reinforce the young merchant’s strength and presence.
It is a piece full of fine details, a statement of Gérôme’s talent and perfectionism, each stroke deliberately adding value and structure to a scene at the same time as quotidian and powerful as a simple merchant selling wares that not match his apparent lack of wealth.
Real Oil Paints, Real Brushes, Real Artists, Real Art. The Certificate of Authenticity which arrives with every painting provides an assurance and verifies the authenticity of the hand painted fine art reproduction you purchased. Each oil painting is created by hand using only the finest canvas and oil paints available.
Important Notes About Your Painting:
If you have any request to alter your reproduction of Pelt Merchant Of Cairo, you must email us after placing your order and we'll have an artist contact you. If you have another image of Pelt Merchant Of Cairo that you would like the artist to work from, please include it as an attachment. Otherwise, we will reproduce the above image for you exactly as it is.
Free shipping is included in the price of the painting. Once the painting is ready and dry enough to ship, we will roll it and ship it in a sturdy cardboard tube.
We always ship express via courier to ensure your order reaches you as soon as possible - normally within three business days. The total delivery time from the moment you place your order until the package is delivered to your door is normally between three to four weeks.
If, in the unlikely event you were dissatisfied with the painting after reviewing it in person, it can be returned for a full refund for up to 365 days after delivery.
When you receive the painting; you are free to return it for more revisions or else for a full refund minus our actual shipping cost -- which is, on average, $25 per painting.
1st Art Gallery provides a full warranty covering manufacturing and material defects for paintings purchased from our website. The warranty covers damage for normal use. Damage caused by incidents such as accidents or inappropriate use are not covered.
Depending on the degree of damage to the warranted painting, it will either be repaired or replaced. This warranty service is provided free of charge.
When purchasing a painting on its own, it will arrive rolled inside a secure tube with an extra 1.5" of white canvas on all sides so you can easily frame it in any local frame shop.
You may choose to purchase your painting framed, in which case, it will arrive "ready to hang". We offer more than 20 beautiful models, all hand finished and expertly assembled by our experienced framers.
Note that for safety reasons we can only frame up to a certain size. Once the maximum size is reached the framing option is automatically disabled.
If you are planning to frame your painting yourself,
use an existing frame, or frame it locally, you may choose to order your painting with a stretching service,
meaning that it will arrive mounted on wooden bars.
If you're considering not framing your painting at all, you may opt for a Gallery Wrap. The term Gallery Wrap refers to the way the canvas is stretched, which is by wrapping it around thick stretcher bars, about 1.5 inch thick, with the canvas being secured to the back rather than the sides of those bars.
All orders ship with UPS, FedEx or DHL and will arrive directly to your home or office. A tracking number will be emailed to you as soon as the order leaves our studio so you can track it online. All orders ship express and usually arrive within 4-5 days from the shipping date. Due to shipping restraints, many of our framed, stretched, and oversize paintings may take 6-21 days for arrival depending on the safest route determined by the postal service.