A Space of Their Own

Julie Charpentier

1770 – 1843

Active in: France


Like many women artists of her generation, Julie Charpentier was born into an artistic family. Her father, François-Philippe Charpentier, was an engraver who enjoyed government sponsorship. Charpentier’s sister, Adélaïde, also practiced as an artist. A sculptor, Charpentier began exhibiting her work in 1787. She made her Salon debut in 1793, exhibiting busts and statuettes. Over the course of her career, Charpentier received numerous commissions from government agencies. By 1801, she was working for the Muséum d’histoire naturelle in Paris, where she worked directly from taxidermy specimens. Despite her success and eventual salaried post with the museum, Charpentier and her family struggled financially. She died in poverty in 1843.

Selected Works


Blancherie, Claude-Mammès Pahin. “Salon de la correspondence pour les sciences et les arts.” Nouvelles de la république des lettres et des arts 8 (1787): 132.

“Charpentier, Julie.” Oxford Art Online. https://doi-org.proxyiub.uits.iu.edu/10.1093/benz/9780199773787.article.B00036002.

Easterday, Anastasia. “‘Labeur, Honneur, Douleur’: Sculptors Julie Charpentier, Félicie de Fauveau, and Marie d’Orléans.” Women’s Art Journal 18 (1997–98): 11–12.

Gabet, Charles. Dictionnaire des artistes de l’école française, au XIXe siècle. Paris, 1831.

Hamy, Ernest Théodore. “Julie Charpentier, sculpteur et préparateur de zoologie (1770–1845).” Bulletin de Muséum d’histoire naturelle 5 (1899): 329–34.

Oppenheimer, Margaret A. “Julie Charpentier.” SIEFAR. http://www.siefar/org/dictionnaire/fr/Julie_Charpentier.