Model created around 1885
High relief in bronze with a light brown patina shaded with green Signed " DALOU " at the bottom left
Bears the mark of the founder " Susse Frs Edts Paris ".
Carries a cartouche annotated " C'EST UN ESPRIT VENGEUR QUI PASSE / CHASSANT DEVANT LUI LES DEMONS / Victor Hugo ".
H. 26 x L. 19 cm, in a fruitwood frame H. 36 x L. 28,5 cm
Aimé-Jules Dalou made the model for this relief to illustrate Victor Hugo's Les Châtiments, a collection of satirical poems condemning Napoleon III's coup d'état in 1851 published in Belgium. Beyond their friendship, the two artists forced into exile shared their political opinions. The influence of Hugo's work can be seen in several of Dalou's sculptures. Félix Bracquemont made an etching after Dalou's relief for the frontispiece of the French edition of the collection, which was not published.
From the hand of the sculptor, we know two plaster reliefs and a bronze copy presented at the Salon of 1890. For health and economic reasons, Dalou accepted the publication of his model and established a contract with the Susse Foundry in 1899 in
three sizes. The first version (15x11cm) consists of a single copy kept at Orsay. The majority of the prints published by Susse are made posthumously in version n°3 (33 x 23 cm); our copy, rarer, is part of version n°2 (26x19 cm) which was quickly stopped by the publisher
- Aimé-Jules Dalou, Les Châti- ments, circa 1885, plaster bas-relief, H. 34,5 x W. 24,2 cm, Paris, Musée d'Orsay, inv. RF 2464 :
- Aimé-Jules Dalou, Les Châtiments n°3, chief model, bronze relief,
H. 15.7 x W. 11.6 cm, Paris, Musée d'Orsay, inv. 4337.
Amélie Simier, Jules Dalou, Le sculpteur de la République, cat. exp. Paris, Petit Palais, 18 April-13 July 2013, Paris, Paris Musées, 2013, model listed under no. 69, pp. 114-115.