Bouchardon (1698–1762): A Sublime Idea of Beauty
The first retrospective on the life's work of the most eminent sculptor of the 18th century.
Fall 2016 – Hall Napoléon
Edme Bouchardon was considered in his time to be an exceptional artist.
He trained at the Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture in Paris before entering a productive period at the French Academy in Rome, and quickly received a studio and lodgings at the Louvre.
Accepted at the Royal Academy in 1735, he became sculptor for the king. Listed in the Encyclopédie—an encyclopedic dictionary of the arts, sciences, and trades—as the continuator of Puget and Girardon, Bouchardon was considered by his contemporaries as a chef d’école, the driving force of an artistic renewal, "the greatest sculptor and the best draftsman of his century" (Cochin).
His style, analyzed as striking a balance between classical influence and a faithful rendering of nature, is admirably conveyed in his numerous drawings, which were actively sought by the elite collectors of the day, along with his terracotta models and his stone and marble sculptures.
This exhibition will be the first large-scale monograph on Bouchardon's oeuvre, and an opportunity to acknowledge him as one of the leading protagonists of Neoclassicism.
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Edme Bouchardon, L'Amour taillant son arc dans la massue d'Hercule, musée du Louvre
© RMN (Musée du Louvre) / C. Jean
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