"VENDANGEUR IMPROVISANT SUR UN SUJET COMIQUE” BY FRANÇOIS-JOSEPH DURET (FRENCH, 1804-65)
Executed by the Auguste Delefontaine foundry, cold stamped “A.D." on base, initialed “P.S." on verso of garment, signed “F. Duret" on barrel
Item # 703PFP20A
A delightful work by François-Joseph Duret titled "the Wine Harvester's Comic Improvisation” and sometimes simply titled “Improvisateur” on later models, this work was executed by the primary foundry working with Duret throughout his career. The back proper left corner retains the stamp A.D. for the foundry of Auguste Delafontaine (Paris, 1840-1883) [see J.G. Reinis p. 85-89], specifically being the most important indicator for this sculpture of having been cast during Duret’s lifetime, or at least very shortly thereafter and with original molds. This model was exhibited at Salon in 1839 and a reduction of it was acquired by the Louvre in 1858 for their permanent collection, that model also executed by the Delafontaine foundry. The sculpture depicts a singing bacchant standing beside a barrel overflowing with grapes from a bountiful harvest, his jovial expression full of life while entertaining onlookers. It is notable for it’s precise casting, exquisite detailing and very good acid patina, the whole being silky and glowing beautifully. This exquisite piece is fun and interesting - the earnestness of the performer makes a statement, his whole body moving in anticipation of the song and in concert with his audience. It is a most striking sculpture and is of self-evident excellence.
- The Founders and Editors of the Barye Bronzes, J.G. Reinis, p. 85-89 (discussion of Auguste Delafontaine’s foundry marks and the history of his foundry)
Measurements: 17 1/4” H x 7 1/2” W x 7” D, base 5 5/8” in depth and width
Very minor patina wear. Some grime in crevices of grapes, etc. Light verdigris around edges of square base. Overall exceptional condition. Please scroll down to view all detailed images of this piece.