Napoleon Bonaparte - Item #209
Each piece is custom finished. Depending on a sculpture’s texture and level of detail, the look of a patina can vary. A slight variation in color from order-to-order is to be expected.
Unless otherwise noted, our reproductions are hand-cast in plaster and reinforced with burlap, fiber strands, and/or metal rods for extra strength.
FLAT WHITE: A unified, matte white finish. This is the optimum patina for cast drawing as it allows focus on form.
WHITE PATINA: A white finish with a light ivory tone added to the top surfaces.
LIGHT ANTIQUE PLASTER: A soft mixture of whites, grays, and yellows to replicate the look of an aged plaster cast.
ANTIQUE PLASTER: A dramatic mixture of grays and yellows to replicate the look of an aged plaster cast.
BRONZE: A rich brown finish with golden highlights to replicate the look of bronze.
STONE: A mixture of lighter tones to resemble natural stone.
DARK STONE: A mixture of darker tones to resemble natural stone.
SANDSTONE: A soft base color with warm highlights to resemble the look of natural sandstone.
TERRA COTTA: A variation of warm tones to resemble terra cotta.
ASSYRIAN STONE (Applies only to item numbers 3, 4, 5, 6 and 738): A two-tone patina augmenting the shallow relief sculpture and its stone texture.
TANAGRA PATINA (Applies only to item numbers 317, 318, 319, 320, 800 and 813): A finish that replicates the colors of the Tanagra figurines as shown in the product images.
24.5 Inches High x 14 Inches Wide x 9 Inches Deep
This bust may be the first attempt by Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741-1828) at a sculpture of Napoleon Bonaparte. It is known that he made a bust of Napoleon before creating the famed terracotta Napoleon as Hermes, but the former has since been lost. We know what the bust looks like due to the existence of a preliminary study for L'Atelier de Houdon by painter Louis Léopold Boilly (1761-1845) now in the Louvre Museum. The plaster cast of the Caproni Collection resembles the bust that Houdon is shown sculpting in the painting. The hair style, the expression in the eyes, and the bold eyebrows are similar. The coat, which exhibits embroidery, appears to be of the same cut. None of the existing copies of the bust have a signature. Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's home, owns one such copy of the sculpture. Jefferson likely received it in commemoration of the Louisiana Purchase which occurred in 1803, when Napoleon was First Consul of France and Jefferson was President. The bust has also been attributed to Antoine-Denis Chaudet (1763-1810) who, like Houdon, created a famous bust of Napoleon.
Artist: Attributed to Jean-Antoine Houdon, Antoine-Denis Chaudet
Museum/Location: Thomas Jefferson's Monticello (copy)
Time Period: Modern, 18th-19th centuries
1911 Catalog ID # - 5463
Huguenaud, Karine. “Jean-Antoine Houdon Sculpting the Bust of First Consul Bonaparte.” Napoleon.org, 2012, https://www.napoleon.org/en/history-of-the-two-empires/paintings/jean-antoine-houdon-sculpting-the-bust-of-first-consul-bonaparte/.
"Napoleon Bonaparte (Sculpture)." Monticello, https://www.monticello.org/site/research-and-collections/napoleon-bonaparte-sculpture.
Poulet, Anne L. "Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France (1769-1821)." Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment. University of Chicago Press, 2005, pp. 323-327. Google Books, https://books.google.com/books?id=EV0BgrzV-fkC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false.
Stein, Susan R. The Worlds of Thomas Jefferson at Monticello. Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1993, pp. 225. Monticello, https://www.monticello.org/site/research-and-collections/napoleon-bonaparte-sculpture