Sculptor - Antoine Louis Barye
Title - Lion Assis
Sand Cast Bronze
7" height by 6 1/8" length
(18 cm by 15.5 cm)
The model of the Seated Lion was first done as a public monumental commission in 1846 for the Gardens of the Tuileries Palace. It was later moved to the entrance to the Louvre, overlooking the Seine. After its placement there, the government asked Barye to submit models for a second Seated Lion to stand beside the original.
Barye created at least four versions of this sculpture for the committee's review. But instead of giving Barye the commission for this pendent to his first Lion monument the government hired Barbedienne to use a variant of the Collas machine to do a reversed image of Barye's original monument, thus avoiding paying Barye for another commission. This was taken as a personal insult by Barye as by the mirroring the first Lion even his signature was reversed in the cast. As the director of sculptures and plasters for the Louvre Barye had to walk past this insult on a daily basis.
Barye cast and sold reductions of his Seated Lion in all of the four variations throughout his lifetime. This was a very popular subject as anyone who visited the Louvre could have for themselves a Barye Seated Lion to guard what ever they wished. Both the original monument and the reversed copy still stand guard outside of the main entrance to the Louvre today.
The Patina on this cast of the Seated Lion is a rich dark green and black.
This Model is illustrated in the books The Barye Bronzes A catalogue Raisonne by Stuart Pivar on pg.145