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Bronze Sculpture

The technique used in the creation of bronze sculptures has changed very little since Antiquity. The sculptor begins by fashioning the subject in wax, then covers it with clay, pours on the bronze, an alloy of copper and tin, then breaks open the terracotta, leaving only the bronze object behind. Highly valued by sculptors, bronze is a robust and resistant material that fairs well outside. Using wax to create the initial mould allows for a high level of detail on the final sculpture, unlike steel sculpture. Certain nuances in color can be produced through the use of patinas.

These qualities explain why bronze is one of the oldest materials to be used by humans. Indeed, bronze tools were used in Mesopotamia, Egypt and China around 2800 BC.

In Mesopotamia, near to present-day Iran, bronze was used to depict animals in sacred art. In Egypt, it was was used to personify the gods, and also to create small sculpture statues placed in the tombs of the deceased. However, it was Ancient Greece, where craftsmen began to sculpt human figures and deities with remarkable realism, that gave bronze its prominent place in the history of art. Many pieces of work were imported to Rome, where the production of bronze sculptures developed. Bronze sculptures soon began to decorate the theatres and the homes of the rich. Admiring the skills of the Greeks, the Romans began ordering sculptures from merchants and craftsmen, who made copies of the moulds of the statues.

With the birth of Christianity, evangelisation and the building of churches became the priorities, and bronze creations were replaced by stone sculptures for decorating churches. It was only in the 14th century that masterpieces were rediscovered during excavations of Italian archaeological sites. A century later, Brunelleschi and Ghiberti set the Renaissance in motion by decorating the doors of the Florence Baptistery in bronze. Donatello, inspired by ancient Roman sculpture, was the first to excel in the art of expressing emotions through bronze sculptures, followed by Verrocchio, his pupil (and master of Leonardo da Vinci). Although the practice spread throughout Europe, it was mainly focused in Italy, where sculptors competed to obtain the most convincing results.

During the 16th century, the Flemish Jean de Bologne established himself as the undisputed master of bronze. He was the most copied artist in the 17th century, and it is partly due to him that the bronze sculpture spread across Europe. In Italy, production of bronze sculpture was fairly constant, irrespective of the period. In France, on the other hand, this technique depended on the political regime. When Louis XIV invited sculptors to his court (essentially to decorate Versailles) demand for bronze reappeared as a form of courtly art.

Bronze sculpture underwent a resurgence during the 19th century, with Rodin and Camille Claudel, and then with Cubism and the Art Deco movement. Bronze is an expensive, heavy material and costly for collectors to buy and its use has become less prevalent in the 20th and 21st centuries, but some artists use it nonetheless: Giuseppe Penone, Alberto Giacometti with his strange silhouettes, the compressions of César Baldaccini, Philippe Pasqua's butterflies and still life sculpture can all be seen on Artsper!

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Our recommendations Artigas Planas, Rose et prose, Sculpture

Artigas Planas

Rose et prose, 2022 33 x 30 x 11 cm Sculpture

$978

Arman, Oud Aidé, Sculpture

Arman

Oud Aidé, 2003 69 x 30 x 23 cm Sculpture

$11,966

Gediminas Endriekus, Sight, Sculpture

Gediminas Endriekus

Sight, 2021 25.5 x 16 x 8 cm Sculpture

$3,954

Milko Dobrev, Sprouts, Sculpture

Milko Dobrev

Sprouts, 2022 27.5 x 9 x 5 cm Sculpture

$1,300

Joanna Zakrzewska-Cholewa, Walk with Friend, no V/VIII, Sculpture

Joanna Zakrzewska-Cholewa

Walk with Friend, no V/VIII, 2022 24 x 12 x 6 cm Sculpture

$1,249

Our recommendations Hans Mendler, Absalom, Sculpture

Hans Mendler

Absalom, 2020 58 x 16 x 20 cm Sculpture

$2,289

Marc Petit, Le veilleur, Sculpture

Marc Petit

Le veilleur, 2020 55 x 29 x 13 cm Sculpture

$4,162

Our recommendations Jean-Philippe Richard, Ida, Sculpture

Jean-Philippe Richard

Ida, 2022 40 x 8 x 8 cm Sculpture

$3,122

Babette Degraeve, Bronzen Knuffel VI (Stuffed animal VI), Sculpture

Babette Degraeve

Bronzen Knuffel VI (Stuffed animal VI), 2020 33 x 20 x 12 cm Sculpture

$1,238

Gor Avetisyan, Spirit of Dance no. II/VII, Sculpture

Gor Avetisyan

Spirit of Dance no. II/VII, 2022 50.5 x 10 x 9.5 cm Sculpture

$4,682

Helle Rask Crawford, Newborn Fowl, Sculpture

Helle Rask Crawford

Newborn Fowl, 2022 9 x 16 x 10 cm Sculpture

$1,020

Jacek Cholewa, Reader (EA II/IV), Sculpture

Jacek Cholewa

Reader (EA II/IV), 2022 17 x 16 x 11 cm Sculpture

$1,145

Karl Lagasse, One Dollar Bronze 6/8, Sculpture

Karl Lagasse

One Dollar Bronze 6/8, 2018 22 x 51 x 1 cm Sculpture

$26,013

Beatrice Bizot, Mondes parallèles, Sculpture

Beatrice Bizot

Mondes parallèles, 2022 333 x 158 x 22 cm Sculpture

$8,845

Pierre Gimenez, La danseuse, Sculpture

Pierre Gimenez

La danseuse, 2021 35 x 20 x 10 cm Sculpture

$1,665

Salfo Dermé (Yabré), Les danseurs, Sculpture

Salfo Dermé (Yabré)

Les danseurs, 2020 66 x 36 x 17 cm Sculpture

$2,393

Sandrine Piani, Bad Mood, Sculpture

Sandrine Piani

Bad Mood, 2022 20 x 20 x 20 cm Sculpture

$4,682

Vincent Lamouroux, The invisible map bronze edition, Sculpture

Vincent Lamouroux

The invisible map bronze edition, 2022 2 x 6 x 11 cm Sculpture

$884

Jean-Marc Mariani, Alecto B, Sculpture

Jean-Marc Mariani

Alecto B, 2022 25 x 20 x 8 cm Sculpture

$1,935

Ventsislav Markov, Forward, Sculpture

Ventsislav Markov

Forward, 2022 16 x 14 x 8 cm Sculpture

$728

Our recommendations Olivier Messas, La Mama... "Amour" [ version : bleue ] (Histoire de famille 2021), Sculpture

Olivier Messas

La Mama... "Amour" [ version : bleue ] (Histoire de famille 2021), 2021 20 x 25 x 10 cm Sculpture

$2,809

Mario Dalpra, Powerful Movement, Sculpture

Mario Dalpra

Powerful Movement, 2021 75 x 35 x 20 cm Sculpture

$10,926

Tiziana Mucchiani, Seashell, Sculpture

Tiziana Mucchiani

Seashell, 2022 30 x 28 x 6 cm Sculpture

$8,741

Petra Dorst, Reading Together Sky & Misty SIII, Sculpture

Petra Dorst

Reading Together Sky & Misty SIII, 2021 38 x 24 x 20 cm Sculpture

$4,110

Aziz Anzabi, Mars Unknown dream 3, Sculpture

Aziz Anzabi

Mars Unknown dream 3, 2022 22 x 10 x 10 cm Sculpture

$24,453

Didier Becquart, Ichneumon - Série Métamorphose, Sculpture

Didier Becquart

Ichneumon - Série Métamorphose, 2015 40 x 80 x 32 cm Sculpture

$10,926

Bastien Bonhomme, Nérée, Sculpture

Bastien Bonhomme

Nérée, 2022 32 x 11 x 9 cm Sculpture

$2,809

Salim Harsous, Portrait, Sculpture

Salim Harsous

Portrait, 1995 22 x 14 x 16 cm Sculpture

$1,873

Sylvie Debray Artiste Bxl, la ballerine, Sculpture

Sylvie Debray Artiste Bxl

la ballerine, 2021 28 x 17 x 19 cm Sculpture

$2,029

Jean-Claude Gaillard, Cochon Punk (Série Copains comme cochons), Sculpture

Jean-Claude Gaillard

Cochon Punk (Série Copains comme cochons), 2019 5 x 8 x 5 cm Sculpture

$468

Zdenek Legner, My Fair Lady, Sculpture

Zdenek Legner

My Fair Lady, 2022 80 x 16 x 18 cm Sculpture

$1,342

Jean-François Gambino, Tête de jeune Orang-Outan, Sculpture

Jean-François Gambino

Tête de jeune Orang-Outan, 2022 21 x 14 x 15 cm Sculpture

$3,642

Tobia Ravà, 1560 Lupo Grigio, Sculpture

Tobia Ravà

1560 Lupo Grigio, 2022 68 x 45 x 26 cm Sculpture

$34,275

Mireille Bassier-Tilmont, Charline, série silhouette de femme, Sculpture

Mireille Bassier-Tilmont

Charline, série silhouette de femme, 2000 23 x 7 x 8 cm Sculpture

$510

David Middlebrook, Hot Air, Sculpture

David Middlebrook

Hot Air, 2017 215.9 x 81.3 x 63.5 cm Sculpture

$47,865

Réjane LeChat, Dialogue à queue, Sculpture

Réjane LeChat

Dialogue à queue, 2022 44 x 44 x 15 cm Sculpture

$1,873

Alimi Adewale, Anonymous, Sculpture

Alimi Adewale

Anonymous, 2018 42 x 14 x 16 cm Sculpture

$10,000

Bruno Roudil, Le Gidre, Sculpture

Bruno Roudil

Le Gidre, 2022 42 x 55 x 120 cm Sculpture

$22,892

Scott Troxel, Modulus III, Sculpture

Scott Troxel

Modulus III, 2022 115.6 x 76.2 x 6.4 cm Sculpture

$4,682

Reda Amalou, Ceci n'est pas un vase Or, Sculpture

Reda Amalou

Ceci n'est pas un vase Or, 2019 45 x 12 x 12 cm Sculpture

$3,018

Julian Opie, Long Hair (from the Boston Statuettes series), Sculpture

Julian Opie

Long Hair (from the Boston Statuettes series), 2020 50.8 x 17.8 x 12.1 cm Sculpture

$12,000

Bernard Métranve, Clares IV - N°4/8, Sculpture

Bernard Métranve

Clares IV - N°4/8, 2022 37 x 23 x 17 cm Sculpture

$4,682

Olivier Chalmin, Olga, Sculpture

Olivier Chalmin

Olga, 2022 80 x 20 x 20 cm Sculpture

$3,746

Thierry Benenati, Elephant-roses, Sculpture

Thierry Benenati

Elephant-roses, 2015 52 x 77 x 40 cm Sculpture

$35,378

Sylvie Debray, La pause lecture, Sculpture

Sylvie Debray

La pause lecture, 2022 20 x 25 x 25 cm Sculpture

$527

Kuno Vollet, Schwerelos, Sculpture

Kuno Vollet

Schwerelos, 2021 70 x 18 x 18 cm Sculpture

$5,411

Martine Camors, Filoména, Sculpture

Martine Camors

Filoména, 2010 53 x 26 x 18 cm Sculpture

$9,454

Laurent Perbos, Niobé, Sculpture

Laurent Perbos

Niobé, 2021 38.5 x 17 x 8 cm Sculpture

$3,330

Les Hélènes, La Bienveillante, Sculpture

Les Hélènes

La Bienveillante, 2022 30 x 13 x 13 cm Sculpture

$437

Alain Quercia, Cheval sur un banc, Sculpture

Alain Quercia

Cheval sur un banc, 2019 22 x 18 x 9 cm Sculpture

$6,243

Andrew Orloski, The heat death of the universe: variant 2, Sculpture

Andrew Orloski

The heat death of the universe: variant 2, 2022 28 x 25 x 32 cm Sculpture

$6,165

Our recommendations Miguel Guía, Calme et le silence bronze, Sculpture

Miguel Guía

Calme et le silence bronze, 2002 40 x 16 x 15 cm Sculpture

$1,228

David Ferreira, To be or not to be, Sculpture

David Ferreira

To be or not to be, 2020 48 x 35 x 10 cm Sculpture

$4,682

Beto Gatti, Fucking Ego, Sculpture

Beto Gatti

Fucking Ego, 2020 24 x 25.5 x 24 cm Sculpture

$15,608

Our recommendations Nando Kallweit, Family I, Sculpture

Nando Kallweit

Family I, 2019 30 x 11 x 8 cm Sculpture

$1,509

Our recommendations Martín Duque, Degas Danseur de Ballet, Sculpture

Martín Duque

Degas Danseur de Ballet, 2004 44 x 16 x 20 cm Sculpture

$1,020

Valérie Hadida, L'Origine #EA I/IV, Sculpture

Valérie Hadida

L'Origine #EA I/IV, 2019 48 x 16 x 11 cm Sculpture

$5,827

Jorn Van Hoorn, Perfect Love, Sculpture

Jorn Van Hoorn

Perfect Love, 2022 26 x 24 x 14 cm Sculpture

$5,723

Sara Ingleby-Mackenzie, Breezy (bronze resin), Sculpture

Sara Ingleby-Mackenzie

Breezy (bronze resin), 2021 40 x 21 x 11 cm Sculpture

$1,048

Our recommendations Linde Ergo, Daydream, Sculpture

Linde Ergo

Daydream, 2018 16 x 16 x 8 cm Sculpture

$1,030

Our recommendations Jesus Campos, Les espaces de Penseur de Rodin, Sculpture

Jesus Campos

Les espaces de Penseur de Rodin, 2004 30 x 14 x 15 cm Sculpture

$1,020

Our recommendations Salvador Dali, Profil du temps, Sculpture

Salvador Dali

Profil du temps, 1984 51 x 35 x 35 cm Sculpture

$37,834

Philip Hearsey, Turnout, Sculpture

Philip Hearsey

Turnout, 2022 10 x 31 x 18 cm Sculpture

$1,197

Our recommendations Christophe Charbonnel, Orphée, Sculpture

Christophe Charbonnel

Orphée, 2018 22 x 15 x 9 cm Sculpture

$2,601

Our recommendations Pinto, Jour de fête, Sculpture

Pinto

Jour de fête, 2021 62 x 8 x 4 cm Sculpture

$1,457

Jean Amiel, Pélican au petit bec, Sculpture

Jean Amiel

Pélican au petit bec, 2016 24 x 17 x 15 cm Sculpture

$1,873

Our recommendations Mireia Serra, Untamed, Sculpture

Mireia Serra

Untamed, 2021 10 x 50 x 5 cm Sculpture

$1,030

Teresa Riba, Tarda al sol VII, Sculpture

Teresa Riba

Tarda al sol VII, 2014 25 x 12 x 10 cm Sculpture

$1,665

Our recommendations Javier de la Rosa, Dardo I green, Sculpture

Javier de la Rosa

Dardo I green, 2018 150 x 20 x 20 cm Sculpture

$1,603

Adeline Weber Guibal, Licorne, Sculpture

Adeline Weber Guibal

Licorne, 2022 21 x 25 x 7.5 cm Sculpture

$1,561

Jaromir Gargulak, Pantomyme, Sculpture

Jaromir Gargulak

Pantomyme, 2015 26 x 10 x 10 cm Sculpture

$1,561

Our recommendations Petar Iliev, A walk, Sculpture

Petar Iliev

A walk, 2021 31 x 14 x 7 cm Sculpture

$1,301

Our recommendations Pere Sala, Trapeci B III, Sculpture

Pere Sala

Trapeci B III, 2021 50 x 20 x 10 cm Sculpture

$1,977

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