Extraordinary Sculpture Louis XIV on Horseback by François Girardon
Bronze, brown patinated, on a rectangular, ebonized and gilt wood pedestal.
Signed on the terrace: Girardon
Dimensions overall: Hight: 202 cm
Dimensions of the sculpture: Hight: 111 cm, Width: 36 cm, Depth: 66 cm
French, 19th century
- Sir Philip Sassoon, Bt., 25 Park Lane, London, (recorded on the Balcony in the pre-1927 inventory and in 1939);
- Collection of the Marquess of Cholmondeley, Houghton Hall, Norfolk,
- Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C Hilbert,
- Mallet Gallery, London,
- Collection of Sheikh Hamad Bin Abdullah Al Thani
A. Maral, F. de La Moureyre, François Girardon (1628-1715). Le Sculpteur de Louis XIV. Paris, 2015, p. 398, fig. 326, p. 224-227.
This impressive bronze is a reduction of the colossal equestrian statue of Louis XIV by François Girardon (1636-1711), cast by the Keller Brothers. Commissioned in 1692 for the Place Louis-Le-Grand (now Place Vendôme) in Paris, and unveiled in 1699, the bronze was destroyed during the Revolution. Only a few fragments of the bronze are preserved, including two fingers and the King's foot (today in the Louvre museum, inv. no. RF 408A & B ). During his lifetime, Girardon was also author of a bronze reduction, signed GIRARDON IN ET FEC (h. 102 cm), which was exhibited in 1704 at the Academy of Painting and Sculpture (Louvre, inv. no. MR3229).
Other reductions of this size are kept in the English Royal collections at Windsor Castle (inv. no. B69 / 527), at the Hermitage of Saint Petersburg and in Vaux-le-Vicomte and in the lobby of the world famous Hôtel de Paris in Monaco.
The equestrian statue of Louis XIV was a very fashionable subject, cast throughout the 19th century by Parisian bronze workshops of founders like Henri Dasson (1825-1896), and Louis Auguste Beurdeley (1808-1882).