Friday, December 2, 2016

My Father’s Studio (1881)

Edouard Joseph Dantan: My Father’s Studio

Edouard-Joseph Dantan was the son of the renowned French sculptor Antoine-Laurent Dantan and nephew to Jean-Pierre Dantan also a sculptor and celebrated for his portraits and caricatures of his contemporaries. Growing up among these two great men, Dantan gained an intimate understanding of both the demands and pleasures of the artist's life. It is this first-hand, nuanced experience that informs the present My Father's Studio, the second version of the artist's Salon submission of 1880. The original, titled Un Coin D'Atelier, was so well-received that it was quickly acquired by the French State for the Musée du Luxembourg (and now hangs in the Sénat), with the demand for further versions soon apparent. In both compositions, Dantan shows his father in his Saint-Cloud studio absorbed in the restoration of his bas-relief of The Drunkenness of Silenus. Antoine-Laurent first completed a terracotta version of The Drunkeness of Silenus for the Prix de Rome in 1831, followed by the marble carving exhibited at the Salon of 1868. [Gandalf’s Gallery]

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