CHARLES-HENRI-JOSEPH CORDIER (FRENCH, 1827-1905)
CHARLES-HENRI-JOSEPH CORDIER (FRENCH, 1827-1905)
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CHARLES-HENRI-JOSEPH CORDIER (FRENCH, 1827-1905)

Fellah en costume de harem (Egyptian villager in harem costume)

Details
CHARLES-HENRI-JOSEPH CORDIER (FRENCH, 1827-1905)
Fellah en costume de harem (Egyptian villager in harem costume)
signed and inscribed 'LE CAIRE/ 1866/ C CORDIER', on a gilt-bronze socle
bronze, gilt and patinated; silvered electrotype
14 in. (35.6 cm.) high, the bust
17 in. (43 cm.) high, overall
Conceived circa 1867.
This bronze circa 1870.

Provenance
Private collection, Vienna.
Thence by descent for several generations until acquired by present owner.
Literature
L. de Margerie et al., Facing the Other: Charles Cordier (1827-1905) Ethnographic Sculptor, Paris, Musée d'Orsay, 2004, no. 97 & 98, p. 155

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Giles Forster
Giles Forster

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Lot Essay

Cordier's Egyptian Harem Girl resulted from studies of local life that he made during agovernment-sponsored ethnographic mission to Egypt between March and June 1866. In a letter to his acquaintance and fellow sculptor, the Comte de Nieuwerkerke, Cordier explained his desire to travel to Egypt: ‘Remonter le Nil, choisir parmi les Coptes, les Abyssiniens, leur vraie beauté, voilà ce qui n'a pas encore été fait [...] Je veux vous rendre moi la race telle qu'elle est dans sa beauté relative, dans sa vérité absolue avec ses passions, son fatalisme, son calme orgueilleux, sa grandeur déchue mais dont le principe est resté depuis l'Antiquité’. The original plaster is now in the Ecole Nationale des Arts et des Industries, Roubaix (inv. 31.890.38).

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