This late 19th-century bronze statuette represents a fusilier in Napoleon's army. Armed with musket and bayonet, the well-equipped soldier wears a tall bearskin hat which is fitted at the front with an eagle badge, and decorated with plume, pom poms, and braided cord. The belt which crosses over the subject's shoulders holds his sword and a cartridge box, which also bears a Napoleonic eagle. Buttoned gaiters, worn to protect the soldier on the march, cover the fusilier's shoes and reach mid thigh. The long skirt of the subject's coat is folded back and hooked up to allow better mobility. Born in Tricesimo, Italy, Luca Madrassi (fl. 1869-1914) studied at "L'Ecole des Beaux-Arts" in Paris. In addition to his realistic military sculpture, Madrassi was a master of the fantastic, modeling such allegorical subjects as fairies, cupids, satyrs and genies. Madrassi exhibited at the Paris Salon and was a member of the "Artistes Francais." Statuette has serpentine-shaped green and white marble base.
35.5" H x 15.0" W x 12.0" D
Cast bronze; marble
Gift of Frances Sabina Fernley and Mary Elizabeth Fernley
Bonaparte Collection, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia