"Charging Ram", bronze sculpture | Felix Guis (1887-1972)
ITEM #: 002HND22K
MODERNIST BRONZE MODEL OF A CHARGING RAM BY FELIX GUIS (FRENCH, 1887-1972)
Signed in base "F. Guis"; foundry cachet for A. Granoux et Cie, Editeurs, Marseille; circa 1930s
Item # 002HND22K
Relatively little is known about Felix Guis other than the handful of sculpture he executed in bronze and the larger body of work he completed in ceramics and terra-cotta. All of his subjects are Modernist interpretations of the Animalier School.
The present model depicts a mountain ram readying to charge, his head lowered and large pair of horns curled back. A powerful and technically impressive work, it was beautifully cast cire purdue and finished in a nuanced black patination with green hues and rubbed bronze highlights. Silky and flawlessly cast, it is a very fine model from the Art Deco era.
The work is sealed with a round cachet noting it as being edited by the foundry of A. Granoux et Cie in Marseille. While they handled a fair amount of sculpture and decorative objects, it seems the firm mostly specialized in electrical elements: chandeliers, sconces, torchieres and industrial lighting applications. Working out of their factory at 17 Boulevard d'Athenes, they also maintained showrooms at 20 Rue Pierre Levée, Paris. The firm held a patent in 1912 for an "apparatus for producing electric contacts at adjustable periodic intervals" (The Mechanical Engineer, Vol. 30, Fowler, 1912, p. 824).
It is an unusual and rather pleasing subject, sharp and stylized while remaining sensitive to the moments of raw power and sheer intensity in this otherwise docile creature.
Measurements: 11 1/4" W x 7 3/4" H x 4 1/2" D
Relieved patination to hip, ribs, ridge of back and tips of horns from gentle handling. Overall exceptional original condition.