Lorenzo Bartolini - Encyclopedia


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LORENZO BARTOLINI (1777-1850), Italian sculptor, was born in Vernio in Tuscany. After acquiring great skill and reputation as a modeller in alabaster, he went in 1797 to Paris, where he studied painting under Desmarets, and afterwards sculpture under F. F. Lemot. The bas-relief "Cleobis and Biton," with which he gained the second prize of the Academy in 1803, at once established his fame as a sculptor and gained for him a number of influential patrons. He executed many minor pieces for Denon, besides busts of Mehul and Cherubini. His great patron, however, was Napoleon, for whom he executed a colossal bust, and who sent him to Carrara to found a school of sculpture. Here he remained till after the fall of Napoleon, and then took up his residence in Florence, where he resided till his death. His works are varied and include an immense number of busts. The best are, perhaps, the group of Charity, the "Hercules and Lichas" and the "Faith in God," which exemplify the highest types of Bartolini's style. Popular opinion in Italy associates his qualities as a sculptor with those of Thorwaldsen and Canova.

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