Large patinated bronze group of the Three Graces after Germain Pilon (Paris, 1528-1590). It features three young women standing back to back with their hands clasped seem to be slowly performing a round dance. The theme, the light tunics, the measured elegance of the gestures, the serenity of the expressions, and the regular facial features are all references to antique statuary. The group is set on a high tripod base richly decorated with masks, putti, foliage and latin inscriptions in Renaissance style, above a red velvet plinth. Bronze foundry stamp A. COLLAS. Probably manufactured by Barbedienne. Light crack on a neck. It was realized in the late 19th century after the Monument to the heart of King Henri II by Germain Pilon, considered, together with Jean Goujon, as the greatest 16th-century French sculptor. The original in marble is now housed in the Louvre Museum.
Dimensions without the velvet plinth: L:45cm, P:40cm, H:96cm.
Dimensions with the plinth: L:45cm, P:40cm, H:103cm.
Commissioned in 1561 by Queen Catherine de Médicis to pay tribute to her late husband, King Henry II, who died after being wounded in a tournament in 1559, it was also intended to receive the queen's heart on her death. It was placed in the church of the Celestine monastery, Paris. Germain Pilon carved the Three Graces and the Italian sculptor Domenico del Barbiere executed the triangular pedestal and provided the model for the bronze urn.
The Three Graces were probably inspired by an antique sculpture of the triple deity Hecate. They also recall a cassolette designed for Francis I by Raphael and engraved by Marcantonio Raimondi. The significance of the Graces has given rise to much discussion. For the ancient Romans, they symbolized conjugal fidelity. The inscriptions on the base, which commemorate the indestructible union of the married couple, give credence to this interpretation. The monument thus legitimized the political role played by Catherine de Médicis in the running of the kingdom.
Bibliography: Louvre Museum online database.
Price : on request
Price : on request