A fabulous early 20th Century animalier gilt bronze plaque decorated with a herd of elephants striding through the long grass of the African savanna with excellent hand chased surfaced detail and very fine colour, signed Virion
Width: 54.5 cm
Condition: Excellent Original Condition
Materials: Gilt Bronze
Charles Louis Eugène Virion ( French, 1 December 1865 - 30 December 1946) was a noted French sculptor and ceramicist, principally of animals.
Virion studied sculpture in Paris under Jean-Paul Aubé and Charles Gauthier and exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Français from 1886 until the 1930s. He was awarded a distinction in 1893 and became a member the same year. He won a third-class medal in 1895. At the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1900 he won a bronze medal. He also exhibited at the Salon des Animaliers after 1913.
After the First World War, he made memorials for several municipalities including those of Montigny-sur-Loing, Nemours, La Genevraye and Arbonne-la-Forêt.
An animalier is an artist, mainly from the 19th century, who specializes in, or is known for, skill in the realistic portrayal of animals. "Animal painter" is the more general term for earlier artists. Although the work may be in any genre or format, the term is most often applied to sculptors and painters.
Although many earlier examples can be found, animalier sculpture became more popular, and reputable, in early 19th-century Paris with the works of Antoine-Louis Barye (1795–1875), for whom the term was coined