A good sized plaster bust of the French writer Voltaire. A late Victorian cast from the original sculpture by Houdon.
The sitter Francois-Marie Arouet 1694-1778 was better known by his nom de plume Voltaire was a French historian, writer and philosopher famous for his wit, attacks on the Catholic church and his advocacy of freedom of speech, religion and the separation of the church from the state.
The sculpture being Jean-Antoine Houdon 1741-1828. He modelled four different busts of Voltaire in addition to his re-knowed seated figure at the Comedie Francais. It is from that figure this bust has been cast.
This bust was created by the firm of D. Brucciani, plaster modellers. Founded by Domenicio Brucciani in the first half of the 19th century they became experts in their field, working for the British Museum and the South Kensington Museum (no the Victoria and Albert Museum) making moulds and casts of their classical sculptures. After Brucciani’s death 1880 the company continued under the ownership of Joseph Caproni and between 1881-1906 traded as Brucciani & Co as can be seen to the rear of this bust.
Presented in decorative condition. Evidence of natural wear and ageing, a chip and scratch here and there with the most notable being a loss to the tip of the nose. We feel this all adds to the faded grandeur of what is still a hugely decorative piece of antique art.
Dimensions in CM
H 52 W 53 D34