Bronze with a nuanced brown patina
cast by Vor (Victor) Thiébaut & fils
signed and dated Dantan "f 1836"
marked "Fdu par Vor Thiébaut & fils"
casr around 1860
height 32 cm
Small in stature, polytechnic, marine engineer, Jean-Baptiste-Apollinaire Lebas (1797-1873) was responsible for bringing back and erecting the Luxor obelisk on the Place de la Concorde, on October 25, 1836, in the presence of King Louis-Philippe I. He used a counterbalance system and the muscles of 350 gunners. He was then curator of the National Maritime Museum and Commander of the Legion of Honor in 1848.
The sculptor Jean-Pierre Dantan made this humorous statue of Lebas holding an obelisk. His name is summed up on the rebus which is represented at the front of the terrace: "The" and a stocking hanging from a clothesline.
Jean-Pierre Dantan, known as Dantan the Younger (1800-1869) was a French sculptor and caricaturist. He was the brother of the sculptor Antoine Laurent Dantan, known as the Elder (1798-1878), and was renowned for his series of portrait-charges of his contemporaries. Formed first by apprenticeship with his father Jean-Pierre Dantan, a wood sculptor, Jean-Pierre Dantan entered the École des beaux-arts in Paris in 1823 and studied with the sculptor François-Joseph Bosio. From 1826 he quickly launched into the caricature drawn and sculpted after the admired creation of his statuette representing César Ducornet (1805-1856) in the realistic aspect of a destitute poet.
Dantan the Younger produced hundreds of small busts of 20 to 60 cm which were produced in plaster or bronze: he sold his caricatures and portraits of the society of his time in a room in the Passage des Panoramas, known as the “Dantan museum”. Grandville, Ramelet and Lepeudry produced a lithographed suite, entitled Muséum Dantorama, for Susse and printed by Aubert and Junca (1835). These portraits-charges representing celebrities from politics (Talleyrand, William Douglas, Hamilton, Louis-Philippe, etc.), the arts (Beethoven, Paganini, Verdi, Liszt, Joseph-Nicolas Robert-Fleury, etc.) and literature (Victor Hugo, Balzac, the Delavigne brothers…) experienced great success. These statuettes inspired his contemporary Honoré Daumier for his portraits of parliamentarians kept at the Musée d'Orsay.
35 000 €