About this artwork
While living in Paris, the sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens executed a series of bronze bas-relief portraits of his artist friends, including John Singer Sargent, and this portrayal of the French painter Jules Bastien-Lepage. In contrast to his previous, bust-length plaques, this portrait is a more complex, half-length composition. At Bastien-Lepage’s request, the sculptor incorporated a palette and brushes to conceal the Frenchman’s hands; this amused Saint-Gaudens, who thought it a “rare combination of talent and vanity in his sitter.” The plaque’s frame was designed by Saint-Gaudens’s friend American architect Stanford White.
- Augustus Saint-Gaudens (Sculptor)
- Jules Bastien-Lepage
- Modeled 1880
- Copper with bronze patina
- Inscribed across top: "[I] VLES BASTIEN LEPAGE AETATIS XXXI PARIS MDCCCLXXX AVGVSTVS / SAINT-GAVDENS FECIT"
- 37.2 × 27 cm (14 5/8 × 10 5/8 in.)
- Gift of Sara Hallowell