Monday, May 13, 2013

Sculpture of the Day: The Laughing Child and The Crying Child, 1750

The Laughing Child and The Crying Child
Probably Louis François Roubiliac
Circa 1750
Bronze on Wooden Plinths with Ormolu
The Victoria & Albert Museum
The subjects of The Laughing Child and The Crying Child were quite popular in the early to mid Eighteenth Century. Several different sculptors created busts of the two children in a variety of media ranging from bronze and marble to plaster and porcelain.

This rare pair of bronze busts is surely the work of celebrated Eighteenth Century French sculptor Louis François Roubiliac (1702-1762) who was renowned for his fine bronze casts. The busts sit upon wooden plinths which have been adorned with ormolu mounts. The plinths, it is believed, are a later addition intended to give a greater sense of importance to the pair.

Roubiliac came from France to England in the mid Eighteenth Century. He quickly made a name for himself throughout Britain and was, until his death, considered the foremost sculptor of his generation in the country. 

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