Gaston Le Bourgeois (1885 - French 1953)
Born in Vire (Calvados) on 22nd March 1880, Gaston Le Bourgeois was a sculptor and art dealer in Rambouillet. He specialised in woodcarving, often using fruitwood as a medium especially as part of interior schemes such as on furniture and mantelpieces. Much of his sculpture seen on the market today is made of wood, his bronzes are much rarer. An established sculptor, he embraced the Art Deco Movement in the early part of his career. In 1922 he took part in a successful exhibition at the Marsan Pavilion with Mathurin Mehut. This exhibition marked the start of his commercial success.
A series of wild animals, fierce and muscular are amongst Gaston Le Bourgeois’s most seductive pieces revealing his ability to capture the inbuilt strength and character of the animals he portrays. He also carved busts, statuettes of people as well as decorative relief in ivory.
Due to a serious work accident Le Bourgeois was unable to enlist during the First World War, as he was physically unfit for service. Unable to fight, he later created a Memorial to the First World War in Grasse. This stone memorial depicts soldiers of the Great War in battle, shooting at the enemy and scenes of destruction; the windmills at Meaux sur la Marne and the mutilated façade of Reims Cathedral. Another large scale commission that he completed was to complete ornamental animal sculptures for a Palace of ‘Bois Coloniaux’ and the Vincennes Exhibition Centre. His works are held in collections at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris and by the Ministère des Beaux Arts.
Pekinese Dog, c.1920