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  Christopher Fratin - Sculptor France

  1 January 1801 -  Metz, France -  17 August 1864 - Raincy, FrancE

  Falconier



French animalier sculptor Christophe Fratin was hailed as the greatest 

animal sculptor of the day at the 1851 


Great Exhibition of London. Fratin learned animal anatomy by assisting in 

his father's taxidermy practice and studied art under the important French Romantic 

painter Theodore Gericault. Fratin's sculptures, 

which typically portrayed animals thin and gaunt as they would appear in the wild, 

reflected a life-like realism that was shunned by many of his 

fellow animalier artists who favored modeling their sculptures after well-fed zoo animals. 

Fratin was a contemporary of the renowned French animalier sculptor Antoine-Louis Barye, 

and the two artists shared a similar struggle with the French Academy 

for acceptance of their work. 

Both Fratin and Barye first exhibited at the French Salon in 1831, 

were rejected in 1837, and did not submit again until 1850. 

Fratin received commissions from the French government for animal sculptures 

for the botanical garden and esplanade of his hometown of Metz. 

He was also commissioned to sculpt Two Eagles Guarding Their Prey for 

Central Park in New York. In addition to these 

monumental works, Fratin, like Barye, also made multiple castings of many of

his sculptures for the growing middle class art market.


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