Louis Vidal (1831 - 1892) was born in Nimes, France on December 6th 1831. Known during his lifetime as Vidal Navatel, Louis Vidal contracted an eye disease in his youth that eventually resulted in him going blind. He studied under the great sculptor Antoine Louis Barye and was helped by Alfred Barye on occasion by retouching his works before they were cast. He signed many of his works Vidal aveugle (Vidal the Blind). He started exhibiting at the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1855 and then at the Paris Salon from 1859 until 1882. Despite being totally blind, Vidal was a remarkable sculptor producing some very fine models and his few works that were cast in bronze are highly prized and sought after by collectors.  He was patronized by Princess Mathilde and the Rothschilds as well as many other patrons of the arts.  In 1888 Vidal became the Professor of modeling at the Ecole Braille in Paris.

The life of Louis Vidal is documented in the following books:

The Animaliers by James Mackay (1973)
Les Animaliers by Jane Horswell (1971)
Animals in Bronze by Christopher Payne (1986)
A Concise History of Bronzes by George Savage (1968)
Bronzes of the 19th Century by Pierre Kjellberg (1994)
Dictionnaire des Peintres et Sculpteurs by E. Benezit (1966)
Dictionnaire de Sculpteurs de l'ecole Francaise by Stanaslas Lami (1914)

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This bronze sculpture has been sold