This major bronze sculpture, executed between 1923 and 1925, embodies some of the main aesthetic principles of an early Art Deco style with its monochromatic color and cubist-inspired form and simplified facial features. This is being offered on behalf of a private collector and is one of the artist’s most important works; he rarely created bronze sculptures with more than one figure.
Jean Lambert-Rucki is a favorite artist of Waterhouse & Dodd – we have sold a number of his paintings but until now no sculptures. He was a Polish avant-garde painter, sculptor and graphic artist who moved to Paris in 1911 and later became a French citizen. The celebrated artist Moise Kisling, a childhood friend from Poland, introduced Lambert-Rucki to the Parisian avant-garde, notably Soutine, Foujita and Modigliani (who advised Lambert-Rucki to concentrate on sculpture and whose studio he briefly shared). He began exhibiting at the 1913 Salon d’Automne in Paris, and from 1919 was represented by both Leonce Rosenberg at the Galerie de l’Effort Moderne and the art dealer Paul Guillaume. Lambert-Rucki showed at many important Parisian exhibitions, and over the years worked in diverse styles and media. He rarely created bronze sculptures after 1930, favoring more organic materials such as clay and wood.
La Foule can be seen as a natural transition between Art Deco’s small decorative salon sculpture and monumental public sculptures. With its 5 figures and a bronze 42 inches high (plus a beautiful wooden base) it is an exceptional work of art with a substantial presence.