Project for a Monument to the Laborer (1889-1902)
The worker is an essential subject in Dalou's work, who notes his desire "to undertake, without further delay, the monument that he dreams of since 1889 to the glorification of the workers. This subject is in the air; it is current and will at some point be treated by another, it is necessary to mark the day. The future is here, it is the cult meant to replace the ancient mythologies. (Maurice Dreyfous, Dalou, his life his work, Paris, 1903, pp. 248-249). In the privy of his studio, the sculptor collects sketchbooks, plans and records in the form of bozzetti modeled on the spot. Although - as Dalou understood - his most ambitious and personal project was in line with his time, it would never find the funding. The death of his wife and his declining health put a permanent brake on the project: Indeed, Dalou had to rush to complete his major commissions received in order to guarantee the financial future of his disabled daughter.
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