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The Musée d'Orsay Presents the Amazon Sculptress

From 13 June 2013 to 15 September 2013

A 19th-Century Female Pioneer

Félicie de Fauveau was a French sculptress born in Italy at the beginning of the 19th century. Her works served as a source of great influence for subsequent romantic artists such as Alexandre Dumas.

Félicie de Fauveau began exploring her talents as an artist at the tender age of 13, while in the company of the Duchess of Berry. Although she began with painting, de Fauveau soon gravitated towards the art of sculpture, which she taught to herself. Drawing inspiration from Medieval art, de Fauveau became a pioneer for women artists as she began to expose her work and gain the admiration of her peers.

In this way, de Fauveau has become an emblem for both groundbreaking art as well as nostalgia for the Middle Ages. Her passion for this time period was so strong that it manifested itself in her political beliefs as well, and the artist was exiled from France in the 1830s for being a Royalist.

Following her exile, de Fauveau found herself in Florence, where she worked on a series of militant Catholic iconographies. Her neo-Gothic and neo-Renaissance styles often played with the symbolism of the coat of arms.

The Musée d'Orsay has organized an exhibition dedicated to de Fauveau, entitled 'Félicie de Fauveau, the Amazon Sculptress.' It represents the very first retrospective of the artist, revealing many works that have never been seen by the public.