After Mêne’s death in 1879 the Barbedienne and Susse Frères foundries acquired the rights to reproduce his models and produced posthumous casts marked F Barbedienne Fondeur and Susse Frères fondeur editeur respectively. These bronzes are of fine quality and are cast by the leading bronze foundries in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, however they do not have the vitality and attention to detail that Mêne achieved on the casts from his own foundry.
ANTIQUE BRONZE OF THE ARAB FALCONER AFTER P J MENE
Height: 25¾ inches / 65.3 cm
Stock number: RW0340/1218
A bronze figure of ‘The Arab Falconer’, after a model by Pierre-Jules Mene (French, 1810-1879), modelled as a man in traditional Moroccan dress holding aloft on his right hand a falcon with its catch of a hare below, in his left hand he holds the lure, set upon a naturalistic form base engraved J.P.Mene and with the foundry stamp for F.Barbedienne, all on a circular marble base. This work was modeled directly after Mene’s Fauconnier Arabe á Cheval, originally executed in 1873. As the 19th century was a time of Western exploration of the Orient, the exotic subject matter was immediately popular in Paris.
Ferdinand Barbedienne was one of the most famous bronze founders of the 19th century. The F. Barbedienne foundry was originally established in Paris (1838) by Ferdinand Barbedienne and Achille Collas. Collas invented a machine that mechanically reduced statues. Collas died in 1859 leaving F. Barbedienne as the sole owner, which by that time had over 300 workers. Barbedienne actively pursued contracts with many sculptors of Paris like David D’Angers, Jean-Baptiste Clesinger, and even producing some casts for Antoine Louis Barye as well as others. He was made the President of the Reunion of Bronze Makers in 1865. He strove to the highest quality in his castings and was awarded many medals in numerous international expositions. His death was mourned by many in the world of sculpture.
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