Maurice Fenaille (1855-1937) was a great Parisian art connoisseur, patron, and philanthropist.
In 1883, he took over his family's company to become a successful petrol industrialist by commercializing innovative products. By the end of the First World War, he was running one of the most important oil companies in France.
A true art connoisseur, Maurice Fenaille became a patron of the arts, supporting many contemporary artists such as Auguste Rodin and Jules Chéret. He also helped out museums by contributing to certain acquisitions, like that of the Bain Turc by Ingres at the Louvre Museum, and by donating many works of art from his collection to various museums. He also took it upon himself to salvage and restore the Château de Montal in the Lot Department by recovering most of the pieces and artworks that had been sold off at several auctions.
Maurice Fenaille's wife was from Aveyron, and he grew very attached to this Department, where he wished to bolster economic development. He founded a school of agriculture and an upholstery workshop. In 1912, he built a sanatorium in Sévérac-le-Château. In the meeting room, he installed the exceptional Alabastro di Busca fireplace with gilded bronze lion heads available on our website.