Charles Gaudichaud-Beaupré

Biography Jacques Arago

Jacques Étienne Victor Arago (Estagel (France) 6 March 1790 – Rio de Janeiro (Brasil) 27 November 1855) was a French writer, artist and explorer, author of a Voyage Round the World.
Arago was born in Estagel, Pyrénées-Orientales. He was the brother of François Arago (1786–1853), a scientist and politician, the most famous of the four Arago brothers. His two other brothers were Jean Arago (1788–1836), a general in the Mexican army; and Étienne Arago (1802–1892), a writer and politician.
Jacques Arago joined Louis de Freycinet on his 1817 voyage around the world aboard the ship Uranie, which inspired his witty Voyage autour du monde.
Although he lost his sight in 1837, he went on traveling and writing for the theater. In Curieux voyage autour du monde (1853), he tells of his round trip without once using the letter "A".
He died in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Botanical Ink Wash Drawings, Jacques Arago click on the thumbnail to view full-size image

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Journey of L´Uranie-La Physicienne, 1817-21.

Those are the twenty-three original ink wash drawings and one additional watercolor that belonged to the personal collection of the French wise and botanist “Charles Gaudichaud Beaupré” which were approved by the scientists and naturalists of the Linnaean Society of Paris as a result of the investigations performed in the journey around the world "L'Uranie-La Physicienne" between 1817-1820 under the command of the Captain Louis de Saulces de Freycinet next to the Artist Jacques Arago who was a very famous French writer, artist and explorer, author of a “Voyage Round the World” and many other books of the last century.

Each one of these drawings were created pararell to the time of the discovery of the plants in every remote continents visited by the expedition, ink drawings with the unmistakable trace of Arago which signature, number, species, localities and dates may be appreciate in each one of these magnificent artworks published today for the first time after 194 years.

All those ink wash drawings have never been published since its creation because only the works of A. Poiret (see the drawings of A. Poiret) were the authorized by Louis de Saulces de Freycinet as captain of the expedition to illustrate the botanical Atlas of this voyage because Poiret was exclusively a botanical artist, not so Arago! Extremely rare and beautiful are Arago´s ink drawings in the field of botany, being his most famous works of this journey concerned almost entirely to the local customs traditions, weapons, clothing, fishes, birds or animals in general, landscapes, architecture, and everything associated to the areas he visited, being those of botany very rare, in which not even Arago is appointed in the renowned botanical authors workbook compilation of history and bibliography data of Claus Nissen "DIE BOTANISHE BUCHILLUSTRATION".

Few of those ink drawings perhaps, retain traces of damages caused by the shipwreck of L´Uranie in the Falkland Islands on February 14, 1820; many might have been lost because of they reach to have numerous high as the 93 for example, certain numbers from these valuable works jumps one, two or various numbers, since they also were lost in the time and being ordered according the itinerary of the journey in matter.
The only watercolor that shows two personages with a giraffe and an explorer at the background is also part of the archive of Gaudichaud Beaupré, being this artwork of an unknown author.

In the memory of these major artists and scientists and the entire whole group who over the centuries has been given the work to give us a wonderful legacy for our benefit in the fields of the arts and the sciences.

Fernando Wamprechts.

Over forty of his drawings were donated to the Honolulu Academy of Arts by Frances Damon Holt

Jacques Arago (1823). Narrative of a voyage round the world, in the Uranie and Physicienne corvettes, commanded by Captain Freycinet, during the years 1817, 1818, 1819, and 1820. Treuttel & Wurtz, Treuttal, jun. & Richter.

Curieux voyage autour du monde de Jacques Arago

"Tattoo Traditions of Hawai'i: Original Drawings by Jacques Arago: John Dominis and Patches Damon Holt Gallery". Honolulu Academy of Arts.