Jean Baptiste Sabatier-Blot

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Jean-Baptiste Sabatier-Blot(1801–1881) was a French painter and photographer.

Appearing among the most famous portraitists of the Parisian daguerreotype of the 1840s, Jean-Baptist Sabatier is still today a poorly known figure among the historians of photography. There was a burst of production, accompanied by the absence of sources of files relating to him, and a scarcity of his name in the press, which make writing on him difficult. He was born on January 31, 1801 in Lassur in Ariège. His parents wanted an ecclesiastical career for him, but his fragile health obliged them to withdraw him from seminary. Afterwards, he developed his artistic talents and became a miniaturist, located in Paris at 50 Palais Royal, exhibiting to the Salon on several occasions since 1831 (1835, 1837, 1839, 1841, 1843), always showing portraits of women. In 1838 he married Miss Blot and in 1839 their only daughter, Maria, was born; throughout the years of the 1840s, both were his favored models for daguerreotype portraits. From the beginning of the 1840s he seemed to become part of the many painters of miniature attracted by the new medium of daguerreotype. During this period he became the pupil of the friend, Daguerre with whom he created at least two portraits, around 1844 (Rochester, George Eastman House and Société française de photographie). It is from 1842 that we find the name “Sabatier-Blot” on the reverse side of a plate of daguerreotype. The following year this name appeared for the first time under the heading “painter-artist,” with “Palais Royal, 137.” It was probably then that, assisted by his wife, Sabatier simul- taneously practiced the two techniques, daguerreotype and miniature, even if the latter had become less favored. That year, Sabatier presented miniatures to the Salon for the last time however, he continued to be presented as “a painter in miniature, making portraits with the daguerreotype” until the 1850s. Sabatier-Blot presented daguerreotypes at “l’Exposition publique des Produits de l’Industrie” (“Public exposition of Products of Industry”) the following year and, according to its publicity, was awarded an honorable mention. The same year, “Sabatier-Blot” appeared for the first time with the heading “Daguerreotypes” and a different address (Palais Royal 163). He was explicitly mentioned as specialist in portraits. He seemed to have been one of the most sought after portraitists of the capital in the second half of the 1840s [1].

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