The Bacchante à la Grappe, in Gérôme's well-known Neo-Grec style, was probably based on a painting he made earlier in his career (see Ackerman, op. cit., p. 235). Gérôme only came to sculpture late in life: his first exhibition of a sculpture at the Paris Salon was in 1878, at the age of 54. Two themes seem to define his oeuvre, both present here - a fanciful fascination with the antique and the colouration of sculpture. The sculptor worked closely with the Siot-Decauville foundry, who were well-known for their skill in producing multi-coloured patinas.
G. Ackerman, The Life and Work of Jean-Léon Gérome, p. 235, no. 231; p. 318, no. S.25
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