"Fighting Warrior", bronze sculpture | Grand Tour, 20th Century
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BRONZE SCULPTURE OF "FIGHTING WARRIOR" AFTER THE ANTIQUE
Unsigned, probably French; circa early 20th century
Item # 904RKP17P
Known somewhat erroneously as the "Borghese Gladiator", this fine bronze sculpture features what the Louvre refers to as "The Fighting Warrior". His defiant and proud stance is the very essence of a man in charge of his own destiny, armed for battle with only an intense personal will. The work is characterized by exquisite casting quality and a fine reddish-brown patina and is raised over an original black slate base.
The present example has reduced the original to its most important element, the powerful figure, whereas the circa 100 B.C. original held in the collection of the Louvre captures the figure standing on a naturalistic base beside a large trunk indistinctly signed by Agasias of Ephesus, son of Dositheus. The sculpture was originally found at Anzio, south of Rome, before 1611 among the ruins of Nero's palace.
Extensive literature has been produced regarding the work and a wonderful synopsis is available by the Louvre regarding the history of the original work. The present example showcases the figure beautifully with extensive chiseling and chasing of the surface into a perfect figure. Every detail is captured and accentuated. From the rippling muscles and anatomical exactness of the form to the hair, wrinkles, eyes, the popping vein running along his thigh and overall spring of his calfs as he rotates his weight onto a front foot, the sculpture captures the best of Italian Classicism.
Measurements: 20 1/8" H [total]; 17 1/8" H [figure]; 3" H [base] x 20" W [total]; 16 1/4" W [base] x 6 3/8" D;
Original black slate base with tiny edge chips and minor abrasions; some patina variation inside of calf (above ankle) and minor patina wear to high-relief; spots of patina wear to elbow and pinky of outstretched arm; speck of loss to calf of front leg.