Art Deco bronze sculpture of the Madonna and child Jesus by Lucienne Heuvelmans (1881-1944). Circa 1930. The sculpture depicts the blessed mother and child in a tender embrace. Her body is draped in a cascading cloak and veil. She is depicted lovingly holding up the baby Jesus in her arms for a mother's kiss on the forehead and he in turn lays a little hand up to bless her veil. The bronze sculpture features a rich patinated bronze and gold gilded finish. The patinated finish of Mary's robes and veil creates a beautiful contrast to the gold gilding on her face, hands and the body of the baby Jesus. She stands on a triple-stepped bronze and wood base. Incised signature 'L. Heuvelmans' on the base. In overall good condition. Measures 12 5/8" height x 4 3/8" length x 2 5/8" deep. On the bottom is an old paper label for the retail shop of La Maison Bleue A.noel. Located at 4, Place Des Petits Peres in Paris, the grand boutique offered religious and devotional objects.
Lucienne Heuvelmans (1881-1944) was a Paris-born painter, illustrator and sculptor best known as the first woman to win the Grand Prix de Rome in 1911. She specialized in mythological and religious themes, and her works can be found in churches throughout France and Belgium. This bronze Madonna and Child statue is based on a grand sculpture of pink stone from Tournus completed in 1928 for the church of Notre-Dame d'Esperance in Paris. church of Notre-Dame d'Esperance in Paris, which also houses a Stations of the Cross in pink stone from Tournus by the same artist . In addition, a well-known copy of the original work is in the church of Saint-Louis in Reims. The sculpture titled "Vierge à l'enfant" (Virgin and Child) is considered one of Heuvelman's most renowned works, so famous that it has been developed in various sizes and materials: plaster, terracotta, earthenware, wood, bronze or chryselephantine.
Lucienne Antoinette Adélaïde Heuvelmans was born in Paris in 1881 as the daughter of Oswald Heuvelmans, a designer and cabinetmaker from Ath, and Donatilde Sandra, a milliner from Leuze-en-Hainaut. These two cities in Hainaut, Belgium still preserve works of this artist. In Belgium, a bronze Christ located in the museum of history and archeology of Ath. As well as an impressive bronze and stone Pax Armata (Armed Peace) monument located in front of the town hall of Leuze-en-Hainaut, created in collaboration between Heuvelmans and the French bronze Fonderie F. Barbedienne. That Pax Armata, was originally sculpted in marble by Heuvelmans at the Medici city in Rome in 1917 for the French state, then made in bronze in 1922 to be the monument to the fallen of WWI of town of Leuze, later enlarged and added with the names of the WWII fallen from Leuze.
She attended classes at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in 1904, where she became a student of the sculptors Laurent Marqueste, Emmanuel Hannnaux and Denys Puech.
The Grand Prix de Rome is prestigious prize and scholarship that France awards to talented young artists in its country. The winners, who were selected through a rigorous competition, were allowed to study in Rome for three years at state expense.
She was the first woman to win a Rome Grand Prize in 1911 for her theme "Oreste et Electre endormis". Admitted to the Villa Medici, she studied there from January 1912 to December 1914 under the direction of Albert Besnard.
On her return to France, Heuvelmans was appointed professor of drawing in the schools of the City of Paris. She installed her studio on the ground floor and the mezzanine of 17, rue des Tournelles in the rear wing of the hotel de Rohan-Guémené. The hotel's main facade overlooks the Place des Vosges in the 4th arrondissement. She regularly participated in exhibitions at the Salon des artistes français where she earned an honorable mention in 1907, then a bronze medal in 1921, and at the Salon des artistes décorateurs in the Grand Palais between 1926 and 1933. From 1924 to 1926, she completed commissions for the Manufacture de Sèvres. The city of Paris commissioned her to create a monumental stone group "Les Illusions et le Regret" for the garden pavilion prested at the 1925 Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Moderne.
Lucienne Heuvelmans received the insignia of Knight of the Legion of Honor in 1926 under the Ministry of Fine Arts (Decree of 22 May 1926). In the early 1930s, she settled in Brittany in Saint-Cast-le-Guildo. She specialized in ancient mythology and religious art.
Heuvelmans died on February 26, 1944 in Saint-Cast at the age of 62, she rests in the family burial plot of the Heuvelmans in the Père-Lachaise cemetery.