• Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
  • Grand Paysan - Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd
Click image to enlarge

Grand Paysan

Aimé-Jules Dalou

(French, 1838-1902)

Signed DALOU
Inscribed Susse Fres Edts Paris and cire perdue
Inset with Susse Fres Editeurs/Paris foundry pastille
Bronze with brown, red and light green patina
Height: 24'' (61 cm)

Conceived 1897 and cast after 1902

Le Grand Paysan was initially conceived as part of the Monument aux Travailleurs (‘Monument to the Working Man’) ­– a project that occupied Dalou between 1889 and 1902. The artist passed away before completing it, however, leaving a large number of terracotta studies which are currently housed in the Petit Palais collection, Paris. Le Grand Paysan was the only sculpture of the group that was ever completed by the artist. Its monumental version was cast in bronze and unveiled to the public shortly after the artist’s death and is now on permanent display at the Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

Dalou worked lengthily on the subject, producing at least six terracotta models in different poses before finalising the peasant’s stance. The artist then worked on the figure’s anatomy, clothing and, finally, on the depiction of his dignified, pensive expression. The result is a work of sober monumentality, which illustrates Dalou’s mastery of depicting the human form in bronze. The model was replicated numerous times after the artist’s death. This particular cast is a fine example of the work created by the Susse Frères Foundry using the cire perdue method. As a result, this example has an especially crisp, detailed surface, which is further highlighted by the deep earth tones of its patination.

The piece is indicative of the poetics of the Realist Movement, which thrived in France from the 1850s onwards. Painters such as Gustave Courbet (1819-1877) and Jean-François Millet (1814-1875) started placing labourers at the centre of their work in order to demonstrate their independence from France’s ‘established’ taste. The political implications of such depictions led Courbet to found the independent Fédération des Artistes in 1871; Dalou joined the group in the same year, fleeing to London shortly thereafter.

While the Realist movement can be credited with the introduction of labourers in painting, it was in England that the first ever worker figure appeared in sculpture, in The Mower by Hamo Thornycroft in 1875; yet Thornycroft’s handling of the subject differs completely from Dalou’s, in that the Mower is a romantic image of a handsome youthful worker, whilst Dalou’s is a more realistic image of a man of the soil.

In London, Thornycroft’s idealist depiction was indicative of the sculptural ‘Renaissance’ that characterised the New School artists. In Paris, Dalou’s realist stances spurred from early counter-establishment aesthetics, appreciated by a wider public by the turn of the century. In this light, Le Grand Paysan and The Mower are a compelling testimony of the deeply interconnected, yet highly independent development of sculpture that characterised 19th-century continental and British art.

Works by Aimé-Jules Dalou

Download Exhibition Catalogues for Aimé-Jules Dalou


Aime-Jules Dalou

2014 Exhibition Catalogue



2016 Exhibition Catalogue


The New Sculpture Movement

2018 Exhibition Catalogue

Browse By Artist

Robert Adams, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Adams, Robert

(British, 1917-1984)

Michael Ayrton, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Ayrton, Michael

(British, 1921-1975)

Antoine Louis Barye, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Barye, Antoine Louis

(French, 1796-1875)

Gilbert Bayes, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Bayes, Gilbert

(British, 1872-1953)

Pietro Calvi, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Calvi, Pietro

(Italian, 1833-1884)

Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Carpeaux, Jean-Baptiste

(French, 1827-1875)

Demetre Chiparus, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Chiparus, Demetre

(Romanian, 1886-1947)

Camille Claudel, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Claudel, Camille

(French, 1864-1943)

Jean-Baptiste Clesinger, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Clesinger, Jean-Baptiste

(French, 1814-1883)

Aimé-Jules Dalou, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Dalou, Aimé-Jules

(French, 1838-1902)

Francis Derwent Wood, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Derwent Wood, Francis

(British, 1871-1926)

Alfred Drury, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Drury, Alfred

(English, 1856-1944)

Sir Jacob Epstein, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Epstein, Sir Jacob

(British, 1880-1959)

Pierre Félix Fix-Masseau, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Fix-Masseau, Pierre Félix

(French, 1869-1937)

Elisabeth Frink, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Frink, Elisabeth

(British, 1930-1992)

Pablo Gargallo, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Gargallo, Pablo

(Spanish, 1881 - 1934)

 George Frederick Watts & Thomas Wren, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

George Frederick Watts & Thomas Wren

(British )

Jean-Léon Gérôme, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Gérôme, Jean-Léon

(French, 1824-1904)

Sir Alfred Gilbert, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Gilbert, Sir Alfred

(British, 1854-1934)

Fritz Klimsch, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Klimsch, Fritz

(German, 1870-1960)

George A Lawson, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Lawson, George A

(British, 1832 - 1904)

Frederic Lord  Leighton, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Leighton, Frederic Lord

(English, 1830-1896)

Andrea Lucchesi, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Lucchesi, Andrea

(Italian, 1860-1924)

Sir Edgar Bertram Mackennal, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Mackennal, Sir Edgar Bertram

(Australian, 1863-1931)

Antonin Mercié, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Mercié, Antonin

(French, 1845-1916)

Ivan Mestrovic, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Mestrovic, Ivan

(Croatian, 1883-1962)

Henry Moore, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Moore, Henry

(English, 1898-1986)

Edward Onslow-Ford, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Onslow-Ford, Edward

(English, 1852-1901)

Eduardo Paolozzi, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Paolozzi, Eduardo

(British, 1924-2005)

Paul  Philippe, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Philippe, Paul

(French , 1870-1930 )

Pablo Picasso, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Picasso, Pablo

(Spanish, 1881-1973)

Attilio Piccirilli, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Piccirilli, Attilio

(American, (1866-1945))

Hiram Powers, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Powers, Hiram

(American, 1805-1873)

Jean-Jacques Pradier, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Pradier, Jean-Jacques

(Swiss, 1790-1852)

Christian Daniel Rauch, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Rauch, Christian Daniel

(German, 1777-1857)

Sir William Reid Dick, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Reid Dick, Sir William

(English, 1879-1961)

Auguste Rodin, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Rodin, Auguste

(French, 1840-1917)

 Rodin and Carrier-Belleuse, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Rodin and Carrier-Belleuse

(French, 1840-1917 and 1824-1887)

 Rodin and Claudel, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Rodin and Claudel

(French , (1840-1917) and (1864-1943))

John Skeaping, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Skeaping, John

(English , 1901-1980)

Alfred Stevens, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Stevens, Alfred

(English, 1818-1875)

Raymond Sudre, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Sudre, Raymond

(French, 1870-1962)

Sir William Hamo Thornycroft, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Thornycroft, Sir William Hamo

(English, 1850-1925)

Albert Toft, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Toft, Albert

(English, 1862-1949)

Anton Van Wouw, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Van Wouw, Anton

(South African, 1862-1945)

Arthur George Walker, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Walker, Arthur George

(British, 1861 - 1936)

Shakespeare Wood , Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Wood , Shakespeare

(British , 1827-1886))

Ossip Zadkine, Bowman Sculpture Ltd

Zadkine, Ossip

(Russian/French, 1890-1967)