Clément Jayet was born in Langres, and was the son of the sculptor Abel Jayet. He began his career in Paris, was made a member of the Academy of St Luke in 1755, but moved to Lyon shortly thereafter. He later became professor of sculpture at the École de Dessin, and was known to have executed a number of portrait busts of local worthies. Although the subject of the present bust is unidentified, it bears strong stylistic similarities to the bust Jayet executed of the painter Jacques Nonotte in 1773 which was sold as part of the Humphris Collection, Sotheby's New York, 10 January 1995, lot 70 ($35,000, exc. premium).