François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850
Lot 100
François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne
cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850
Sold for £122,500 (US$ 198,389) inc. premium

Lot Details
François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850 François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850
François-Christophe-Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) A large pair of French mid-19th century gilt and patinated bronze figural torchères: Esclave Indien and Esclave Indienne
cast by F. Barbedienne (before 1869) from models by Toussaint dated 1850
the male and female figures each holding aloft a cut-glass torch, on panelled chamfered rectangular black marble plinths, the bronze pedestals of cylindrical baluster form with acanthus leaf collars and four engaged foliate scroll corbel supports with fluted ornament, on circular socles cast in the form of ribbon-bound laurel garlands, each signed A.Toussaint 1850 and Fondeur F.Barbedienne, 36cm wide, 36cm deep, 217cm high (14in wide, 14in deep, 85in high). the figures 112cm high (44in high). (2)

Footnotes

  • Armand Toussaint first exhibited a plaster model at the 1847 Salon in Paris entitled "Un esclave indien portant une torche" along with its female pendant.

    The models were cast in bronze three years later, commissioned by the French Ministre de l'intérieur, and after being exhibited at the 1850-1851 Paris Salon (exh. no 3599) they were placed in the Ministry's bureau in the Palais de l'Elysée.
    These models described as "Les deux indiens (esclaves porte-lumières)" can be seen in the Barbedienne catalogue from 1855, then edited in two sizes (112cm and 70cm). The present lot corresponds to the tallest edition.

    At the 1862 Great Exhibition in London, Graux-Marly also exhibits a cast of these torchères, described by the French reporter Deherain as follows: «During one of our last Salons, everyone was struck by those half naked figures, with their eyes on the ground, expressing the resignation of a vanquished people; these are two excellent candelabra models, who have been reduced to numerous dimensions; these will be beautiful at the bottom of a monumental stair".
    After Toussaint' s death in 1869 Ferdinand Barbedienne and Graux-Marly signed an agreement to regulate the cast edition of these models. According to this contract Barbedienne is limited to edit them in sizes below 99.5cm and Graux-Marly higher than 108cm.


    Armand Toussaint (1806-1862) studied under David d'Angers at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. During his career he created sculptures for parisian monuments including the Louvre, Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Sulpice church, the Basilica of St. Clothilde, and the Palais de Justice. He received the medal of the Légion d'Honneur in 1852.


    Closely related bronze torchères include examples sold Sotheby's New York, 21 October 2008, lot 85, for $218,500.
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