A pair of majestic roaring lions after Prosper Lecourtier

Early 20th century

Carved stone

Dimensions of the lions : H : 95 cm (37’’ 3/8) / W : 66,5 cm (26’’ 3/16) / D : 115 cm (45’’ 1/4)

Dimensions of the pedestals : H : 109 cm (42’’ 15/16) / W : 74 cm (29’’ 1/8) / D : 123 cm (48’’ 7/16)

Roaring lions carved out of stone, supported by a scroll pedestal, these important garden sculptures were made after the model by Prosper Lecourtier, animal sculptor. Shown in movement, a thick and plentiful mane, an opened den which let us imagine a powerful roar, these lions impress as well by their threatening attitude as by their realism.

Famous bronze model, these roaring lions are rarely seen carved out of stone. It seems that the original model, in bronze, was exhibited by Prosper Lecourtier at the Salon of 1908, then that many casts were made, proving the success met by this lion.
The Guéret Museum of Art and Archeology also keeps in its collections a bronze edition of this roaring lion, bequeathed to the museum in 1954 by an art collector.

"Roaring lion" after Prosper Lecourtier, bronze and marble, Museum of Art and Archeology Guéret.

Here, our lions were made as a pair, symmetrically, which seems to be absolutely new for this model.

The Roaring Lion by Prosper Lecourtier in São Paulo, Brazil 

A version of our roaring lion is now exhibited at Parque Ibirapuera in São Paulo, Brazil. This sculpture was acquired by São Paulo‘s mayor, Raymundo Duprat, between 1911 and 1914 to be placed in front of the city hall proving the fame of this model since its creation. The lion later took his place in the big park of the city.

"Roaring Lion" in marble after Prosper Lecourtier, Parque Ibirapuera, São Paulo, Brazil.

"Roaring Lion" in marble after Prosper Lecourtier, Parque Ibirapuera, São Paulo, Brazil.

Prosper Lecourtier, animal sculptor student of Emmanuel Frémiet 

Born in 1851 in the Meuse region, Prosper Lecourtier is an animal sculptor who inherited know-how and taste for wildlife from his master Emmanuel Frémiet. He exhibited at the Salon of French Artists from 1875 and will be present until his death in 1924.
He was awarded a 3rd class medal at the 1880 Salon, a 2nd class medal in 1897, a bronze medal at the 1900 World's Fairand a 1st class medal at the 1902 Salon.

At the Salon of 1908, he is out of competition and presents a gilded bronze group entitled "Storm" and a bronze "Lion", perhaps the model of our roaring lions. The previous year, he had presented a bronze lioness.

A Lion descending from a rock, a marble statuette made around 1900 and bequeathed to the French State in 1909 by the art collector Alfred Chauchard, is currently preserved in the collections of the Orsay Museum in Paris.

Prosper Lecourtier, "Lion descending from a rock", marble statuette, circa 1900. Orsay Museum, Paris.

If the theme of the lion seems to have been treated several times by Prosper Lecourtier, the fact remains that our roaring lions are the best-known model created by the sculptor, the only one that was made in large dimensions during the artist’s life.

We would like to thank the Guéret Museum of Art and Archeology for their help and information on the Roaring Lion which is kept in its collections.

Cet article est également disponible en : French