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"Two Hounds on a Leash" | Isidore Jules Bonheur

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French, 1827-1901

Two Hounds on a Leash

Medium-brown patina on sand-cast bronze | Signed in cast "ISIDORE BONHEUR" | circa 1870

Item # 001RVF20Z 

An incredibly fine and rather rare sand-cast model of two hunting dogs bound together by chain links, the lively scene captures the two as they have caught the scent of game in the air and a frenzy has overtaken them. The work is almost certainly cast by the Hippolyte Peyrol foundry in light of the rather distinctive construction of his models, though it is not marked by his tiny foundry mark. Early ink markings on the underside read "1838" crossed out followed by "1600" as well as "No. 23". In a white pigment, the inside of the edge is marked "... Madeleine Sevestre".

Models and paintings of hunt scenes were incredibly popular during this period, particularly in the profitable English market where Bonheur and his contemporaries courted clients. The present example is inordinately well-cast with fine texture detailing the surface of each dog and the complex patina contrasting the muscle and bone structure of their bodies in a dramatic fashion. Movement and urgency are palpable in these excited hounds, stunted only by the crisp tiny chain links that keep them together. The naturalistic base is signed in the corner "Isidore Bonheur".

Literature & Further Reading:

  • See Animals in Bronze, Christopher Payne, p. 207, fig. D23 where the model is illustrated and discussed

Measurements: 15 3/4" W (base alone is 14" W) x 8 3/4" H x 6 7/8" D

Condition Report:
Exceptional original condition, no observed flaws. A very fine presentation.