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JACQUES DOUCET, Collector
(Paris 1853 - 1929)

Between 1895 and 1927, Jacques Doucet owned one of the first high fashion houses in Paris, on rue de la Paix, where he acquired his fortune through a wealthy clientele of actresses and worldly women.




"Above all do not call call him a couturier,
Mr. Jacques Doucet is a Collector ! Fémina magazine 1903

A collector and a perfectionist, he gathered several different groups of works, drawings, paintings and furnishings, from the 18th century to the avant-garde of his time. A significant part of his collection is displayed at the Angladon museum.


A benefactor of the arts, he provided funds for several writers (Suarès, Max Jacob, Desnos, Reverdy, Breton, Aragon...) and donated two libraries with several thousand works and documents to the University of Paris. These irreplaceable works are now part of the Jacques Doucet Library of Art and Archeology, and the Jacques Doucet Literary Library.
For more information on this subject, see the biography by François CHAPON, former Director of the Bibliothèque Littéraire Jacques Doucet.
His book, published in 1986, "Mystères et splendeurs de Jacques Doucet", was re-issued in 1996 by Plon-Perrin with the title "Jacques Doucet et l'art du mécénat".






KEY DATES IN THE HISTORY OF THE COLLECTION
1874, couturier Jacques Doucet, born in 1853, buys his first works of art: a marine scene by Monet and a Study of a dancer by Degas. Doucet rapidly shows a strong preference for the 18th century and builds an outstanding collection which is beautifully displayed in his Louis XVI-era private mansion in Paris.
1906 the size of his collections brings him to prepare a new home on rue Spontini next to which he founds a library of art and archeology, which he soon opens to the public.
1912, he sells off almost all his 18th century works during an unforgettable sale. Masterpieces by Manet, Van Gogh and Cézanne now hang in his drawing rooms.
1913, his new home on avenue du Bois is the occasion for many orders for art deco furnishings from Pierre Legrain, Eilen Gray and Marcel Coard. A generous benefactor, he helps artists and writers, funds research and publications. He chooses André Breton as the advisor to the Literary Library, and makes two stunning acquisition on his recommendation:
1922, The Snake Charmer by Douanier Rousseau (Paris, Orsay museum)
1924, The Demoiselles d'Avignon by Picasso (New York, Moma)
As he adds to his collection of works by the best artists of his era, he decides to build a "studio", a true gallery of art in Neuilly, devoted to contemporary art. The art deco setting is hung with paintings by Matisse, Chirico, Picabia, sculptures by Zadkine, Idenbaum and Brancusi, and strewn with rugs by Miklos and Lurçat..
Doucet only enjoyed this new venue a short time, for he died on 30 October 1929. His widow, Jeanne Doucet, turned to her husband's nephew, Jean Dubrujeaud, for advice on managing the collection. For financial reasons, a few sales took place, and in 1937, the cubist works by Braque and Picasso were sold in New York.
Jean Dubrujeaud inherited the collection from Mme Doucet in 1958, and in 1968 bequeathed the majority of his fortune to his son, Jean Angladon-Dubrujeaud (1906-1979), painter and engraver in Avignon. Jean Angladon-Dubrujeaud and his wife Paulette Martin (1905-1988) donated some works to museums (Louvre, UCAD) and sold others, and also made some acquisitions.
The couple, both artists, had no children and decided to leave their collection, through the Fondation de France, to an Avignon foundation responsible for creating a museum.

 
Musée Angladon - Avignon - angladon@angladon.com