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(b St-Quentin, 5 Sept. 1704; d St-Quentin, 17 Feb. 1788). With Perronneau the most celebrated and the most successful French pastel portraitist of the 18th century. His portraits are remarkable for their beauty of colour, their mastery of texture, and above all their brilliant handling of expression, which gives them a feeling of great vivacity. La Tour himself said, ‘I penetrate into the depths of my subjects without their knowing it, and capture them whole.

Text Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)