Musée d'Orsay: Albert Bartholomé Weeping Girl

Albert Bartholomé
Weeping Girl

Weeping Girl
Albert Bartholomé (1848-1928)
Weeping Girl
Bronze statue
H. 44; W. 63; D.56 cm
© RMN-Grand Palais (Musée d'Orsay) / Jean Schormans

Petite fille pleurant [Weeping Girl]

Albert Bartholomé started his career as a painter and turned to sculpture after the death of his wife, when he set about making a monument for her tomb. He is above all known for his Monument to the Dead in the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris, of which Weeping Girl is a part.

Located at the end of the central aisle, the stone monument rises in two tiers: in the middle of the lower level a couple with a baby is sleeping peacefully in death, protected by an angel. Above this alcove, a trapezium-shaped doorway symbolises the portal to the after world. A couple is crossing the threshold. Two lines of men, women and children are converging on the portal, from the right and left. The overall design was inspired by ancient Egyptian temples and the neoclassical tombs of the Italian sculptor, Canova.

Inaugurated in 1899, the monument was unanimously acclaimed as a masterpiece and the bronzes cast of separate parts of it were a commercial success. Weeping Girl is one of these reductions of one of the lateral figures.

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