Et la sculpture française de la génération romantique | Catalogue raisonné
The greatest Genevan artist of the 19th century, the most renowned Swiss sculptor, and one of the leading figures in European neoclassical and romantic sculpture.
Moving to Paris in 1808, James Pradier was awarded the prestigious Grand Prix de Rome, enabling him to study in the Holy City for five years at the Académie de France. On his return to Paris he embarked on a brilliant career, securing important commissions for the Invalides, Place de la Concorde, the Arc de Triomphe, the Palais du Luxembourg, and the Chamber of Deputies. Pradier made several busts of Genevan dignitaries for his hometown, as well as the famous statue of Jean-Jacques Rousseau on Île Rousseau.
The author of this book has viewed around 500 sculptures by this virtuoso sculptor, detailing their history and critical fortunes in illustrated notes.
The catalogue proper is preceded by a monograph outlining Pradier’s meteoric career in Paris, revealing his everyday workshop routine, his relationship with the various craftsmen and writers of his day, among whom were Victor Hugo and Gustave Flaubert, and showing how he was always on the lookout for public commissions and kept in close touch with the publishers of his statuettes.
Claude Lapaire is the honorary director of the Museum of Art and History of Geneva.