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Details & Cataloguing

19th & 20th Century Sculpture, including works from Cecil Howard’s Studio

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London

Albert Bartholomé
1848 - 1928
FRENCH
LA FONTAINE

Catalogue Note

Albert Bartholomé was an autodidact who focused on painting for much of his early career. After the tragic early death of his wife in 1886, he devoted himself to sculpting. Many of his works exude a peaceful melancholy, which can also be found in his most famous Monument to the Dead at Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris, finished in 1899. Together with Rodin's Gates of Hell, this has often been seen as one of the greatest expressions of symbolist sculpture. Bartholomé won the Grand Prize for sculpture at the Exposition Universelle in 1900, and continued to have a successful career as a sculptor.

The present marble, La Fontaine, was first modelled in plaster by the sculptor in 1896 (Burolletop. cit. S. 28/A), intended as a preparatory plaster for a marble to be exhibited at the Salon de la Société nationale des Beaux-Arts. Bartholomé retained the plaster in his studio, which inspired several later versions in bronze and marble, one of which was recorded as part of his widow's collection in 1928. Another version in marble, dating to 1905, is part of the Imperial Collection in Japan. The present La Fontaine, with its fluid lines and organic structure, presents the opportunity to acquire an impressive marble by the important symbolist sculptor who has been recently 'rediscovered' (see Burollet, op. cit.).

RELATED LITERATURE
P. Kjellberg, Bronzes of the 19th Century: Dictionary of Sculptors, London, 1994, pp. 52-53; T. Burollet, Bartholomé: La redécouverte d’un grand sculpteur, Paris, 2017, pp. 245-247, no. S.28

19th & 20th Century Sculpture, including works from Cecil Howard’s Studio

|
London