Jardin du Luxembourg : Delacroix!

Ok folks lets go into higher gears in my eternal Paris. As said, a blog on its own should be more fitting but will give briefs on the wonderful things to see and do here, already with many many posts on Paris, the city I have great memories of working there while living nearby and now still visiting.

One of the places that is a must to go in Paris is the Jardin du  Luxembourg  , wonderful spots spent many afternoons with my boys there. Therefore, let me tell you about what we found best there, and I meant just the best for us. And why not my favorite statue fountain of Eugéne Delacroix. One of favorite personage in the history of France and a painter’s delight.

In the Jardin du Luxembourg there is one monument dedicated to Eugéne Delacroix, the painter A complex monument comprising a fountain, a bust and decorative characters. This monument was inaugurated on October 5, 1890.  Eugène Delacroix is a French painter born in 1798 in Charenton-Saint-Maurice and died in 1863 in Paris. The times raises glory to the left, so that she lays a crown and a palm in front of the bust, on the right, Apollo, genius of the Arts, applauds this late recognition. The total height of the monument is 4.50 meters. Sculptor Dalou used a photograph of the painter by Nadar to carved his features. On the pedestal you can read  ” A /Eugéne Delacroix / 1798 – 1863 / Ses Admirateurs”  or To / Eugéne Delacroix / 1798 – 1863 / His Admirers. It is located between the Luxembourg Palace and the Orangerie behind the Luxembourg Museum.

paris

It consists of a rectangular basin in white marble into which six water jets are poured by masks fixed on the wall of the water buffet which decorate the background. The bronze and marble monument is 4.5 meter  high and the bust of Delacroix is ​​one meter high. On a base surmounted by three steps is placed a stele, on which is fixed the bronze bust of Eugène Delacroix  who participated in the painted decoration of the Senate Palace and Saint-Sulpice Church,  a particularly abundant work and whose merits are universally known. The face of the painter marked by fatigue and illness in the last years of his life is severe and a little discouraged.

The artist is accompanied by allegories of bronze whose figures evoke Time, Glory and the Genius of the arts. Time is on the left side, it is obviously a somewhat shoddy, bearded and bald god; however, he carries in his arms a pleasant and sensual young woman, as the sculptor Jules Dalou loved them, raising him to the bust of Delacroix, to whom it offers a palm that honors and symbolizes the many merits of the painter. On the right side is the Genie of the Arts in the form of a crowned god who claps in his hands to applaud the triumph of Delacroix. At the foot of the monumental sculptures are quivers with their arrows, a Franc helmet, characters and bucranes. An inscription on the stele recalls that this monument was erected thanks to the subscription of his friends and admirers in 1890.

Ok so these are the webpages to give more info on this monument.

The Senate of France on sculptures such as Delacroix: Senat de France on sculpture such as Delacroix

I take my bus 82 by Rue Auguste Comté almost corner with Bd St Michel to do some walks around here before moving onward home by train. If come by car stop by Rue Guynemer off street parking on the other side. On the bus the nearb Le Bac St Michel is a nice place to unwind, Friends restaurant for quick snacks burgers and such is ok. My fav is on the other side Le Guynemer.

Paris

Of course I need to tell you on this post a bit on the man Eugéne Delacroix, one of my favorite painters of France. RIP

When he was born, his father, Charles Delacroix, held important positions as Minister of Foreign Affairs, then as Ambassador to Holland. He was then appointed prefect in Marseille, then in Bordeaux, where he died when the young Eugène was six years old. His mother, Victoire Delacroix, was the daughter of one of the greatest cabinetmakers of his time, Jean-François Oeben, in the service of King Louis XV.  Thanks to the support of his uncle, the painter Henri-François Riesener, Eugène Delacroix entered the studio of the painter Pierre-Narcisse Guérin in 1815. It was then one of the largest workshops in Paris, frequented by many artists.

And the rest is beautiful painting history such as at  the Salon of 1822, he was only twenty-four years old, Delacroix presented at the Salon a first large canvas, inspired by literary history, Dante and Virgil in Hell (now at the Louvre museum). He presented at the Salon of 1824 a large painting, inspired by the events of the Greek War of Independence, Scene of the Massacres of Scio (now at the Louvre museum). In 1827, Delacroix exhibited, with several other paintings, a masterful Death of Sardanapalus (now at the Louvre museum). Linked to a play by the English poet Lord Byron, the work shows the oriental sovereign seated at the top of a pyre, surrounded by his horses, his riches, his wives, whom he wished had disappeared with him, condemned for treason.  He presented at the Salon of 1831 his Freedom guiding the people, a masterful work linking ancient allegory and contemporary representation. The work is acquired by the State and exhibited now at the Luxembourg Museum.

In 1826, he had already received an order from Christ in the Jardin des Oliviers for the Saint-Paul Saint-Louis Church in the Marais. In 1834, thanks to the support of Adolphe Thiers, Delacroix was commissioned to produce the sets for the Salon du Roi at the Palais Bourbon, in the Chamber of Deputies. In 1837, he received the order for the ceiling of the library of this same in the Chamber of Deputies, devoted to the arts and sciences. In the mid-1840s, he also painted the decor of the Luxembourg Palace library, the current Senate. In the early 1850s, Delacroix was honored with the commission for the central decor of the Galerie d’Apollon, designed in the 17C by the painter Charles Le Brun, and remained unfinished. It represents the god Apollo, winner of the serpent Python. It’s the victory of light over darkness, a victory of color.

Delacroix paints a very moving Pietà in the Saint-Denis-du-Saint-Sacrement Church, in what is now rue Turenne. In 1849, he received the order for the decorations of a chapel of the very large Saint-Sulpice Church, the Chapel of the Holy Angels. This masterful work occupied him until 1861. He produced two large facing murals, The Struggle of Jacob with the Angel and Heliodorus expelled from the temple, as well as the ceiling, Saint Michael defeating the demon.

in January 1857, at the seventh attempt, the painter was finally accepted into the Academy of Fine Arts. The loyal Jenny Le Guillou, his housekeeper who joined him in 1835, was the only one to live by his side, sparing him the hassles of everyday life. Eugène Delacroix died on August 13, 1863 in his apartment on the rue de Fürstenberg ; his atelier and today museum in his honor at no. 6-8. Jenny Le Guillou takes his last breath, in the early hours of the morning.

A wonderful and well merit monument to a great painter of our modern times, one we may never see the likes again. Hope you enjoy the Jardin du Luxembourg and especially the monument of Eugéne Delacroix; always a must stop for me.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

Tags: , ,

2 Comments to “Jardin du Luxembourg : Delacroix!”

  1. Such a comprehensive write up of Delacroix. I will have to look for the statue when I’m in Paris this fall. Love your historic perspectives.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: