Equestrian statue representing Louis XIV on horseback going into battle
after Pierre Cartelier and Louis Messidor Lebon Petitot dit Louis Petitot
The equestrian representation of the prince is extremely old since it has already been established in Antiquity.
The famous bronze effigy of Marcus Aurelius (121-180) from the Capitol in Rome will be the model par excellence. Known throughout the West for countless scale models, it will inspire many artists.
The first projects were initiated in France with François Ier who commissioned the Primatice to make a bronze cast of the Roman Marcus Aurelius. Catherine de Medici envisages Michelangelo to statuary her husband Henry II killed in a tournament. His pupil Daniel de Volterra will make the bronze horse, and the king will be left out, until Louis XIII is put back in the saddle on the mount abandoned three-quarters of a century earlier, by its author and the sponsors. The statue of Henry IV is the first to be erected in the public square and the last where the king wears the clothing of his time. A long series is thus begun, which will develop especially in the years 1680 to 1700 and whose apotheosis remains surely the monument to Louis XIV de Girardon erected on Place des Victoires in Paris in 1699.
The way of showing the king cavalier therefore evolves according to the power. With the reign of Louis XIV, the absolute state asserts itself. The horse is therefore the mirror of the sovereign's policy: of his bellicose policy, therefore external, internal, institutional and cultural.
The king on horseback mainly adopts two gaits: a calm gait: the horse has one of its forelegs raised and the diagonal posterior detached from the ground, it is called "the passage", this majestic gait is an elegant position. The second is "the levade", more lively, the horse lifts its forelegs while standing almost seated on its hindquarters. It symbolizes the charge, it evokes the heroism of the sovereign, even if he never charges.
Sitting on his horse, Louis XIV symbolizes military authority by brandishing the command stick, amplifying a gesture that directs a weapon, he thus embodies power.
War was the big business of princes and kings in the 17th century, but during the second half of the century, the king no longer led his troops in combat. Since the captivity of François I in Pavia, the king is far from the theaters of military operations, however in great communication Louis XIV invents the royal heroism "in image".
This sculpture is a reduced model of the bronze equestrian statue of Louis XIV located on the Place d'Armes in front of the Palace of Versailles.
Designed by Pierre Cartellier, it was unfinished when he died in 1831, only the horse initially designed for an equestrian statue of Louis XV ordered in 1816 by Louis XVIII for the Place de la Concorde (not completed) was completed. Louis XIV is the work of Louis Petitot, the whole will be cast in bronze by Charles Crozatier in 1838 who will execute certain reduced models.
Pierre Cartellier, (1757 - 1831) silversmith and sculptor, professor at the School of Fine Arts in Paris, member of the institute. Louis XVIII commissioned him to make the equestrian statue of Louis XIV to celebrate the restoration of the Bourbons.
Louis Messidor Lebon Petitot known as Louis Petitot (1794-1862), son of the sculptor Pierre Petitot, pupil of Pierre Cartellier of whom he will become the son-in-law. Prix ??de Rome in 1814, he resided at the Medici villa from 1815 to 1819.
Charles Crozatier (1795 - 1855), bronzier of art is a disciple of Pierre Cartellier, he is at the same time as Louis Petitot in Rome from where he brings back many casts. Established in Puy en Velay, he discovered several processes to improve molds, so he was responsible for making monumental castings.
dimensions with base
H: 83 cm
Depth: 23.5 cm
H: 65 cm
L: 57 cm
Price : on request