After Pierre Legros the elder (French, 1629-1714): A pair of early 18th century bronze figures

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Lot 33Y
After Pierre Legros the elder (French, 1629-1714): A pair of early 18th century bronze figures

£ 3,000 - 5,000
US$ 4,200 - 6,900
After Pierre Legros the elder (French, 1629-1714): A pair of early 18th century bronze figures
The Philosophers Diogenes with his lantern and the hunch-backed Aesop, each on a square brass-inlaid tortoiseshell base in Boulle style, 16.5cm high, (6"high), overall height 25cm, (9.5") (2)

Footnotes

  • Comparative literature:

    L.O. Larsson, European Bronzes 1450-1700, Swedish Natioanl Art Museums, Stockholm, 1992, pp. 46-47; E. Szomodis-Eszlary, Trois petits bronzes de l'atelier de Pierre Legros I, Bulletin du Musée Hongrios des Beaux-Arts, 1973, pp. 41-48; F. Souchal, French Sculptors of the 17th and 18th centuries. The reign of Louis XIV, vol.II, Oxford, 1981, p.251, no. 16; Cat. exp. Sechs Sammler stellen aus, Hambourg, Museum fur Kunst und Gewerbe, 1966, nos. 89 et 90.

    This interesting pair of statuettes represents two out of a series of ten philosophers, of which historically documented examples are to be found in the museums of Budapest, Dresden and Stockholm.

    The statuette of Aesop corresponds perfectly with a life-size lead statue (originally painted or gilded and now in the Versailles Museum) that - opposite a similar figure of Cupid - used to welcome elegant visitors to the Labyrinth in the gardens of Louis XIV's palace at Versailles (Inside the maze were lead sculptures of animals enacting his 39 Fables). This is documented to the sculptor Pierre Legros the Elder in 1672, and so it is likely that he produced the small model for the statuette, as well as for its several companions, which were then produced as a series in some commercial bronze foundry in Paris.
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