Early 19th century French self-portrait, $40,000 (£31,600) at Andrew Jones.

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The 14 x 13in (35.5 x 33cm) oil on relined canvas showed a young artist in the fashion of the French Empire period looking out to the viewer from his easel.

It was attributed to the super-talented portrait and genre painter Louis Leopold Boilly (1761-1845) and did bear a youthful likeness to other later works in his oeuvre. Estimated at $2000-3000 at the sale on November 29, it was a sufficiently intriguing prospect to sell for $40,000 (£31,600) in Los Angeles.

Boilly is the man who introduced the term trompe-l’oeil (trick the eye) to art history.

It was his 1800 illusionist painting Un Trompe-l’oeil depicting layers of overlapping prints, drawings, and papers, covered by a sheet of broken glass, that gave the technique its name.