Eugene Laurent (France, 1832-1898) "Psyche" Antique Bronze Sculpture, signed on base "E. Laurent", no foundry mark, c. 1886-1900
Item # 130103QIP22
This is a very attractive original antique bronze sculpture by Eugene Laurent of "Psyche", executed in bronze with only a light patina applied to the surface, allowing the naturally golden tones of the bronze to glow through. She is posed as a kneeling maiden, her garb slipping away in crisp and complex folds along her knees and legs. Her arms are crossed against her bent knee, each arm with a carefully incised gold band of outstanding scratched detail. Hanging from her hand is an oil lamp clenched loosely by her perfectly captured and highly detailed fingers. Her hair is pulled back and up with a thin netting around her hair, traces of red from the acid patina dancing through her hair and the net. Her name is impressed on the front in Greek.
Eugene Laurent was born in Gray, France in April of 1832, exhibiting regularly at the Salon between 1861 and 1893. "Psyche" was first exhibited in 1886. A highly sought after work, many inferior casts have been offered, many of them crafted after his death in 1898 - this cast is of exceptional quality, clearly of the period and of superior detailed hand chasing.
A similar piece, though of slightly smaller dimensions, sold at Brunk Auctions (March, 2008, Lot 89) for $4,400. This is a very fine sculpture for serious collectors of French bronze works of the late 19th Century and Art Nouveau period.
Literature: Works by Laurent are noted in most major books on the period, including "Bronzes, Sculptors and Founders" by Berman and "Bronzes of the 19th Century" by Kjellberg.
Measurements: 14" wide x 7 1/4" deep x 16 1/2" high
Condition Report: Discoloration to the varnish, somewhat yellowed in some areas. Patina discolored, though much of that is intentional, with some light wear. Very tiny "dent"/abrasion to back edge of rim. Dusty.
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Period American Furniture, French Furnishings, Fine Nineteenth Century Art and Sculpture
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