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    Sale 11899

    Sculpture

    13 April 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 68

    A TINTED PLASTER PORTRAIT BUST OF HONORÉ GABRIEL RIQUETI, COMTE DE MIRABEAU

    ATTRIBUTED TO CLAUDE ANDRÉ DESEINE (1740-1823), FRENCH, 1791

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    This lot is offered without a reserve

    A TINTED PLASTER PORTRAIT BUST OF HONORÉ GABRIEL RIQUETI, COMTE DE MIRABEAU
    ATTRIBUTED TO CLAUDE ANDRÉ DESEINE (1740-1823), FRENCH, 1791
    On an integrally cast socle, remains of a red wax seal to reverse, inscribed on shoulder 1791, the further inscribed f. par Deseine sourd millet/à Paris, 1791
    32 5/8 in. (83 cm.) high


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    A French nobleman, debtor, womanizer, and former prisoner, Mirabeau (1749-1791) rose to prominence in the early stages of the French Revolution to become a voice of the people. He served as a leader of the moderate position, utilizing his abilities as a strong orator to argue the virtues of a constitutional monarchy. Mirabeau died in 1791 a great hero. However, by the following year he was suddenly viewed as a traitor; his reputation forever tarnished with the knowledge that beginning in 1790 the supposed revolutionary was in the pocket of Louis XVI and his Austrian allies.
    Following Mirabeau's death the great French sculpter Houdon took a deathmask before the news broke of his treachery. But rather than giving him the commission for a bust, the Jacobits threw open the projects to competition. Deseine ultimately won the prize, with a model based on the deathmask. Another version of this bust belongs to the Museé des beaux-arts, Rennes.

    Special Notice

    This lot is offered without reserve.
    Please note this lot will be moved to Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services (CFASS in Red Hook, Brooklyn) at 5pm on the last day of the sale. Lots may not be collected during the day of their move to Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services. Please consult the Lot Collection Notice for collection information. This sheet is available from the Bidder Registration staff, Purchaser Payments or the Packing Desk and will be sent with your invoice.


    Provenance

    Mrs. Dorothy de Rothschild, London.
    Important 19th century and earlier sculpture and works of art; Christie's, London, 17 July 1984, lot 118 (as after Claude-Andé Deseine).