The Louvre boasts an unrivaled collection of pastels from the 17th - 18th centuries. This technique of creating paintings with colored powder, which was compared with pollen on the wings of a butterfly, was in vogue mainly during the reign of Louis XV and Louis XVI. Extremely fragile works represent the society of the Enlightenment and illustrate the genius of his most famous artists - Rosalba Carriera, Maurice Cantena de Latour, Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin, Jean Baptiste Perronno, Jean Etienne Lyotard, Jean Marc Nattier and Elizabeth Vigee-Lebrun. Along with them at the exhibition"In society" are represented by their lesser known colleagues, such as Maria Suzanne Giroux, Adelaide Labil-Jiar, Joseph Bose and Joseph Ducroy.
The exhibition presents more than 120 pastels from the collection of the Louvre, mainly since the XVIII century - the Golden Age of pastels - along with works that could have been seized by the Nazis during the Second World War and handed over to the French museum in 1949.
The main exhibits of the show were "The Portrait of Marquise de Pompadour" by Maurice Cantena de Latour, as well as recent acquisitions, such as "The Portrait of the Actor Löken" by Simon Bernard Lenoir. Viewers are given the opportunity to compare these works of French artists with works by pastelists from other countries - Italian Rosalba Carriera, Swiss Jean Etienne Lyotard and Englishman John Russell.