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512
[MODERN ITALIAN
SCULPTURE


the bust of Professor Moke, at Antwerp, “ Heliotrope ” in the museum at Ghent, “ Portrait of M. Charles van Hutten, ” the Wilson monument in the Musée Communal, Brussels, the statue of “ Marnix de Sainte Aldegonde ” in Brussels, the monument erected at Courtrai to Mgr de Hearne, the monument of Meddepenningen at Ghent, and the monument of the Gevaert family in the Communal Cemetery at Evere.

The art of Charles van der Stappen (b. 1843) is decorative in character, mostly applied to architecture, though he proved himself a versatile sculptor, producing many statues, reliefs, groups, monumental works, and statuettes. His works include a silver centrepiece executed for the town of Brussels, the statue of William the Silent in the Square du Petit Sablon, Brussels, a bust for the monument of Edouard Agneesens in the cemetery of St ]osse-ten-noode, St Michael in the Gothic hall of the Hotel de Ville, Brussels, the monument to Baron Coppens near Sheel, the Alexandre Gendebien monument at Brussels, statues for the Alhambra theatre and Caryatids for the architect De Curtis' house in the same city, and the group of tired workmen, called “ The Builders of Cities." The work of Thomas Vingotte is characterized chiefly by its vigour and vitality. Vingotte is classed by some authorities as belonging to the classic group, but his work is less graceful than that of de Vigne and more vigorous and life-like than Van der Stappen's. There is perhaps more movement in his work than in that of any of his contemporaries. The many portraits he executed reveal the ability of grasping the essentials of portraiture as well as the discrimination necessary to discard everything that does not render the work alike and characteristic. Among his works are a statue of Giotto in the Brussels Museum, “ Music, " on the facade of the Palais des Beaux Arts, the Godecharles monument in the Park, the bronze group of the “ Horsebreaker "in the Avenue Louise, and the statue “ Agneessens ” in the Boulevard du Midi, all of them in Brussels. There is also a bronze group of horses and Tritons for the park of the Chateau d'Ardenne.

Few men have exercised such influence upon Belgiansculpture as Ief Lambeaux (1852-1908), the Flemish artist. He was born at Antwerp of (poor and obscure parents. At an early age he showed great aptitu e for drawing, and after a very meagre education he was apprenticed to a wood carver. While there he studied at the academy schools. At sixteen he completed his course and undertook his first important commission, that for two reliefs for the tympana of the French theatre. He was successful for a time in producing statuettes, but after a while his success waned and he was obliged to abandon sculpture and to take any work he could get. After a period devoted to odd employments-sometimes painting, sometimes modelling-he again saved money to enable him to produce some good works. The first of these, “ The Kiss, " was finished in 1880. It had a great success and was bought by the Antwerp Museum. This discovery of a sculptor of talent led the town of Antwerp to find the means for sending Lambeaux to Italy. After studying in Florence he returned to produce “ La Folle Chanson, " which by some is considered his masterpiece. The group of “ Intoxication ” produced later is less satisfactory. The figures show a curious and unpleasant development which the sculptor's previous work scarcely hinted at. A work which may be placed with his “ Folle Chanson " is the “ Fountain of Brabo ” in front of the Hotel de Ville at Antwerp. This in fact is declared by many critics to be Lambeaux's chefd'azu11re; it is certainly his most imposing monument. Other works of his are “ The Robber of the Eagle's Nest, " the wonderful colossal glief, “The Passions of Humanity, ” “ The Wrestlers" and “ The gy'l¥

Less bold and energetic than Lambeaux's is the work of Ilulien Dillens (b. 1849). Though it does not possess that sense of li e and the directness which is found in his brother sculptor, his standard of excellence was steadier. He will be remembered as one of Belgium's finest decorative sculptors, for his best work has been done in architectural enrichment. His pediment for the Hospice des Trois Alliés at Uccle is a successful treatment of the difficult dress of modern times. Dillen's masterpiece is without doubt the group of “ Justice ” in the Palais de justice at Brussels. He is responsible for many other important works, the chief of which are the busts of De Pede and Rubens in the Brussels Museum, a statue of Van Orley in one of the squares of Brussels, “ The Lansquenets, " on the summit of the Royal Palace (before its reconstruction), a statue of ]ean de Nivelles on the front of the Palais de justice at Nivelles, and the marble statues of St Victor and St Louis at Epernay. There is yet another artist who ranks as one of the greatest sculptors of Flanders: This is Jules Lagaé (b. 1862). He was a pupil of Ief Lambeaux. His work does not call for further distinction from that of Dillens and Lambeaux, than that it is what may be termed “ delicate ” and possessed a distinctive charm of spontaneous freshness. His “ Mother and Child, " shown at Florence in 1891, is a good example of the first quality, while “ The Kiss, ” a terra-cotta bust, shows his spontaneity.

In the Walloon provinces two sculptors have done much for the renaissance of the art. Achille Chainaye and Jean Marie Gaspar. Achille Chainaye (b. 1862) is not a prolific sculptor, but all his work is inspired, it would seem, by similar motives and ideas to those which inspired the early sculptors of Florence. The scarcity of his works may be accounted for by the fact that his productions were received with ridicule and derision. Meeting with scant success, he abandoned sculpture and devoted himself to journalism. The work of lean Marie Gaspar (b. 1864) shows the inspiration of a whole gamut of emotions, but hardly the continuity of purpose necessary to carry to completion half of his conceptions. He studied under Lambeaux, and, while still in his master's studio, he produced a wonderful group, ” “ The Abduction, ” two men on furious, plunging horses wrestling for the possession of a struggling woman. This group was shown at the Paris Exposition of 1889, and brou ht immediate fame to the then unknown sculptor. Of his- other finished works may be cited “ The Brave, ” an Indian on horseback; “ Adolescents, " a charming group of two nude children embracing; “ The Young Girl on a Rock, ” and the “ Panther, ” destined for the botanical gardens at Brussels.-From

the death in 1904 of Constantin Meunier (b. 1831) up to the year 1910 no man had advanced beyond the standard set up by that great sculptor. At the outset of his career Meunier had, like all pioneers, to contend with the hostility and derision of the public and of the press. His work touched a hitherto unawakened note. His sympathies lay all with the people who, obscure and unsung, work for the enrichment of the nation. Thus we find his energies and love of work wrapped around the iron foundry, the mine, the field and the factory. His art is not the art of the pseudo-classic, nor is he influenced by the masters of the Renaissance. His work is free and straightforward, true almost to brutality, but withal inspired by a love of doing homage to the workers of the people. He studied in the studio of Fraikin. But it is unlikely that he was much influenced by him, and he soon forsook sculpture for painting. He was for some years one of the group of independent painters, which included De Groux, Dubois, Boulanger, and Baron. When these artists fell apart, Meunier stood alone, painting where no painter had before ventured or given a thought, working amongst the machinery, the pits, and the great factory yards. He continued for twenty-five years to paint in this manner, ignoring public ridicule and neglect. Then Meunier suddenly returned to his old love and produced some small, statuettes. One of these-a puddler seated in an attitude of weariness, hard and rough and muscular, clad in little beyond his leathern apron-attracted much attention at the exhibition of the “ Society of the XX." at Brussels. The subject and the treatment, so different to the recognized precepts of the schools, created a vast amount of discussion. From that time Meunier continued on the road he had taken, and, produced works which gained to him new believers and new friends. Among his chief productions are “ Fire-damp, ” in the Brussels Museum, “ The Mower, ” in the lardin Botanique at Brussels, “ The Glebe, " and “ Puddlers at the Furnace, " both in the Luxembourg Museum, “ The Hammerman, " the statues on the facade of Notre Dame .de la Chapelle, and the monument to Father Damien at Louvain. Jacques de Lalaing is the author of the masterly monument erected at Evere to the English officers and men who fell at Waterloo, an elaborate work full of imagination and sculptural force and originality. His statue to Robert Cavelier de la Salle, at Chicago, is also a noteworthy performance, and important decorative works by him are to be seen embellishing public gardens in Brussels. Among the leading sculptors of to-day is to be reckoned Charles Samuel, who leans towards the traditions of yesterday.

Canova so dominated the world of sculpture at the beginning of the 19th century that the pseudo-classic style which he introduced remained typical of all the Italian sculpture of note until Bartolini led the movement which' xgffg” ultimately crushed it. In Rome Canova completely m, , p¢, ,, .e » overshadowed all other sculptors except perhaps Thorwaldsen, the Danish sculptor, who resided for some time in that city. It is true that Pompeo Marchesi (1789-1858) at the outset of his career enjoyed great popularity, but at the time of his death he was well-nigh forgotten. The interval between the death of Canova and the irise of Bartolini and the new school was filled in by men of mediocre talent, in whose work the influence of the leader of classicism is strongly marked. Francesco Carradori (1747-1824), Camillo Pacetti (1758-1826), Rinaldo Rinaldi (b. 1793) and Giuseppe Fabris (b. 1800) were all followers of Canova, the last three being pupils of that master. Lorenzo Bartolini (1777-1850) became the leader of the movement towards naturalism. This was nothing more nor less than the servile copying of form-both in natural forms and in dress. Nevertheless Bartolini must be remembered as the pioneer of a different kind of naturalism which was of far greater importance than the manner of treating forms and texture. His true originality layi in'his representations of

character. In place of the classic subjects invariably treated