The conversion of St. Paul on the road to Damascus
In 1819, he presented at the Salon a State order, The Conversion of Saint Paul, reproduced in tapestry by the Gobelins and preserved today in the museum of Dijon (oil on canvas, 325 x 390 cm). Our painting is a sketch of this imposing canvas.
It should be noted that this large painting is exhibited the same year as, The Raft of the Medusa by Theodore Géricault, capital painting of the passage from neoclassicism to romanticism. It is particularly interesting to note in our sketch and in the final version the strongly romantic expression of the subject’s thought and its implementation in the composition. The play on the tones of the colors being characteristic of the romantic atmosphere while keeping an academic pictorial quality. Jean Pierre Franque shows with genius and brilliance his vision of a rising romanticism.