The Anxious Lover

The Anxious Lover - Jean-Antoine Watteau © RMN
Jean-Antoine Watteau - (Valenciennes, 1684-Nogent-sur-Marne, 1721)
The Anxious Lover - Jean-Antoine Watteau © RMN

At the beginning of the eighteenth century, Watteau created a new genre in painting: the "Fêtes Galantes" ("the gallant parties"), and managed to get recognition of this genre to the strict Royal Academy of Painting. His works frequently represent Commedia dell'arte characters, flirting with young women during garden parties at sunset, most often in a melancholic atmosphere. The roses the Worried Mistress is holding are thought to represent a consummate love.