The post-it notes pad shows the painting by Élisabeth-Louise Vigée-Lebrun (1755-1842), a portrait of Marie-Antoinette of Habsburg-Lorraine (1755-1793) known as the portrait of “Marie-Antoinette à la Rose" (detail) in oil on canvas.
On 31 May 1793, Elisabeth Vigée-Le Brun, the Queen’s protégée, was received at the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture (Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture) at the same time as her competitor, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard. That same year, she showed her work at the Salon for the first time. Vigée-Le Brun notably presented a new portrait of the Queen wearing a “gaulle” or “chemise à la reine”. Adapted to the Parisian fashion of the day by the milliner Rose Bertin, this muslin dress was the Queen’s favourite outfit when she stayed at the Petit Trianon, away from the court. Visitors to the Salon were shocked by this portrait – they felt that the Queen was not dressed in a way worthy of her rank. The painting was quickly removed.
Vigée-Le Brun then quickly painted a second portrait to be exhibited before the end of the Salon. Keeping the pose from the first painting, this time she dressed the Queen in a more classical blue-grey dress, indicating the Marie-Antoinette’s implicit support for the Lyon silk manufacturers. This second portrait was an overwhelming success. Several copies were made, including the one kept at the Palace of Versailles.