From a recent estate sale is a fine rare cold patinated gold cast metal bust of LUCRECE by renowned French Art Nouveau sculptor E. Villanis. "LUCRECE" to front of base. Un-Signed. C 1880-1900
A wonderful presentation of this renowned bust in a gold toned finish. Of course, this is Lucrece from the story described in both Ovid's Fasti and Livy's history of Rome. In 509 BC, Sextus Tarquinius, son of Tarquin, the king of Rome, raped Lucretia (Lucrece), wife of Collatinus, one of the king's aristocratic retainers. As a result, Lucrece committed suicide. Her body was paraded in the Roman Forum by the king's nephew. This incited a full-scale revolt against the Tarquins led by Lucius Junius Brutus, the banishment of the royal family, and the founding of the Roman republic.
Emmanuel Villanis (1858-1914) was active in France and began exhibiting at the salon in 1896. Strongly influenced by Art Nouveau, he produced many fine works mostly representing feminine figures. They were cast in bronze and mixed metals. The mixed metal castings were often cold painted or patinated to look like bronze.
Although unsigned, this is a known design of Emmanuel Villanis and is featured in Michael Forrestâe's Art Bronzes and in Vol. 4 of Harold Berman's Bronzes Sculptors and Founders.
LUCRECE was a very popular and highly sought after art piece during the Art Nouveau period. This is perhaps the most collected bust that Villanis produced along with Diana. It is getting almost impossible to find this bust in any condition – much less in this condition. This great heirloom art piece will anchor any Art Nouveau, sculpture, Classical, bust or Villanis collection and will look amazing regardless of where you choose to display her.
Height: 14 inches Width: 9 inches Depth: 6 inches Condition: Fine with only normal use and wear indicators commensurable with age.
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Item ID: 226
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