Lovely Ormolu Sculpture of a Mouse by Georges Gardet.
A charming Gilt Bronze sculpture of a Tiny Mouse, chasing a Scarab out of a Snail shell, by famed ‘animalier’ sculptor Georges Gardet.
The whimsical rendition is very much in keeping with the La Fontaine tales, but is actually just a invented by Georges Gardet.
The inquisitive face of the mouse is delicately rendered and the chiseling is lovely.
This work was first produced by Georges GARDET in 1897 and the model in porcelain is kept at the Musee d’Orsay.
A sculptor and Medalist Georges Gardet was the son of Joseph Gardet and was part of the Animaliers Sculptors.
Born in Paris in 1863 he studied first at the École des Arts Décoratifs, then at the des Beaux-Arts de Paris.
From 1885 he exhibited regularly at the Salon des Artistes Francais. He would go on to receive several awards including a Gold Medal at the 1889 Exposition Universelle de Paris.. In 1900 he was elected to the office of the Légion d’Honneur, and in 1917 he was consecrated as a Member of Académie des Beaux-Arts
Our charming Bronze is signed G Gardet on the upper part of the terrace.
It is also bears the F Barbedienne stamp for the Founder on the back of the terrace.
Ferdinand BARBEDIENNE was born in Loudon, Calvados in a small farm on August 6th 1810.
He began his Parisian Career as a wallpaper dealer, but soon met Achille Collas who had just invented a machine to create miniature bronze replicas of Antique statues.
Together they decided to approach the Europeans Museums and began selling the perfect miniature replicas of their most beautiful Antique statues, thus democratizing collections and making Artworks more accessible to households.
In 1843 they expended their range to include statues made by living artists and proposed enameled works.
Barbedienne actively pursued contracts with Jean Baptiste Clesinger as well as David D’Angers.
Among the more famous Artists approached by Barbedienne and Collas were August RODIN and Antoine Louis BARYE.
In 1859 Collas passed away, leaving Ferdinand BARBEDIENNE as sole proprietor of the company which by then had become successful enough to include 300 workers, and was located Rue de Lancry in Paris.
In 1865 Barbedienne was named as the President of the Reunion of Bronze Makers.
In 1870 the start of the Franco Prussian war halted the Art business briefly, but Barbedienne soon received a government contract for the production of cannons, which kept him from bankruptcy.
After the war he picked up his artwork castings again and by 1876 had purchased 125 casting models from Antoine Louis BARYE. He devoted a full catalogue for these sculptures and was extremely successful in selling them.
He passed away in March of 1891. It was said that he had attained the highest quality of casting ever achieved and that he had helped promote France’s mastery of the Bronze Arts.