Musée d'Orsay: François Pompon Owl

François Pompon

François Pompon (1855-1933)
H. 19; W. 8,5; D. 8,2 cm
© RMN-Grand Palais (Musée d'Orsay) / A. Morin / Gallimard

Chouette [Owl]

Pompon worked on the subject of owls between 1918 and 1923. There are two versions, either with the eyes protruding or with the eyes set back as here.
Pompon stylised the animal by smoothing the body until all detail was eliminated, and by emphasising the immobility of its pose. The Chouette exists in several materials: wood, plaster and bronze. This model, which does not have a foundry mark, is characterised by its beautiful green patina, but there are also examples with black patina.

In 1926, Pompon would return to the theme of owls, but this time in relief and taking flight. He produced numerous animal statues that were admired by many for both their formal beauty and inoffensive simplicity.

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