LEBRETON, Louis (1818-1866)
[TAHITI] Rade & Port de Pape-Iti. Arrivée au mouillage du C. Amiral Dupetit Thouars.
[= Harbour and port of Papeete. Arrival at anchorage by Rear Admiral Dupetit Thouars]. Paris : Vor. Delarue et Cie. ; London : Anaglyphic Company ; Leipzig : Gebrüder Rocca, 1844. Lithograph with hand colouring, 305 x 483 mm (sheet 408 x 557 mm); printed title in lower margin, along with identification of the various ships, including Dupetit Thouars’ vessel Reine Blanche (third from left) and Uranie (second from left), the grave of Pomare II (foreground), and the flag of the Protectorate and the British consulate (at far right); with ‘Dessiné et lith. par Lebreton’ and ‘Imp. par Lemercier’; edges with mild matte burn (offsetting) and residual tape marks at top edge, but a very good example; unframed.
Drawn and lithographed by the renowned marine artist Louis Lebreton, this superb lithograph is one of two by this artist which depict the French ships of Rear Admiral Dupetit Thouars in the bay of Papeete on 9 September 1842, imposing a French protectorate over Tahiti and the Marquesas. The official annexation by France would take place 6 November 1843.
The artist, Louis Lebreton, was a watercolourist and trained physician who served as a ship’s surgeon on Dumont d’Urville’s scientific expedition (1837-40). He became the official voyage artist following the death of Ernest Goupil in Tasmania, and was ultimately responsible for most of the illustrations in the Dumont d’Urville voyage account’s Atlas pittoresque (1846).
This separately issued lithograph appears unrecorded in Australian collections.