LEMOYNE, Jean-Louis
(b. 1665, Paris, d. 1755, Paris)

Jules Hardouin-Mansart

Marble, height 110 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris

Coysevox was the dominant influence on the portrait busts by Jean-Louis Lemoyne. When received into the Academy at Bordeaux in 1692 he presented a bust in wood of the king (Louis XIV).

In Paris he presented at the Académie as his morceau de reception a bust of its protector, Hardouin-Mansart, the architect of Versailles, Marly, the Invalides in Paris, among others.

This imposing marble of 1703, now in the Louvre, is probably the most successful of Lemoyne's few official busts. It is the Coysevox formula for the king utilized for the king's representative. In Lemoyne's bust Hardouin-Mansart shines out, heavy, confident, assertive, amid a profusion of lace and curls, one of the last grand siecle personalities. Everything seems pushing; the marble rolls grandiloquently, but the characterization is otherwise rather slight, smoothed away in an aura of pomp and dubious benevolence.

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