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Mr Antoine Durenne

Antoine Durenne was a prominent figure in the world of French sculpture during the 19th century. Born on October 3, 1822, in Sommevoire, France, he would eventually become renowned for his contributions to the art world, particularly in the field of bronze sculpture.

He was born in France in 1822 and was later educated at l'Ecole des arts et metiers in Angers in 1841 and l'Ecole des Beaux-Arts in 1842.

began his career as an apprentice in a foundry in Paris, where he honed his skills in metalworking and casting. His talent and dedication soon caught the attention of influential figures in the art community, leading to opportunities for him to collaborate with established sculptors of the time.

In 1847, Durenne established his own foundry in Sommevoire, which would later become known as the Fonderie Durenne. This foundry played a significant role in the production of bronze sculptures during the 19th century and beyond. Under Durenne's guidance, the foundry gained a reputation for its exceptional craftsmanship and attention to detail.

His firm, of the same name, was active between 1847 and 1930, and is noted especially for its ornamental ironwork and over-life size, iron, and bronze, cast animal sculpture groups, examples of which can be found in several UK historic parks and gardens.

Throughout his career, Durenne worked on numerous projects, producing sculptures ranging from small decorative pieces to monumental public monuments. His work often featured classical themes and figures, reflecting the influence of the neoclassical style that was popular during his lifetime.

One of Durenne's most notable achievements was his collaboration with renowned sculptor Auguste Rodin. Durenne's foundry cast several of Rodin's famous works, including "The Thinker" and "The Age of Bronze," contributing to their widespread recognition and acclaim.

He died in 1895.

legacy extends beyond his own artistic endeavors. His foundry continued to operate successfully even after his death in 1895, passing through several generations of his family. Today, the Fonderie Durenne remains active, preserving the tradition of fine art casting and maintaining Durenne's legacy as a pioneer in the field of bronze sculpture.


  1. Benge, Glenn. "Auguste Rodin: Sculptor." YWAM Publishing, 2005.
  2. Davenport, Ray. "Davenport's Art Reference & Price Guide." LTB Gordonsart, 2017.
  3. "Antoine Durenne." Benezit Dictionary of Artists, Oxford University Press, 2011.


Davis, John, Antique Garden Ornament (Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors' Club, 1991)

Further reading:

Durenne, Antoine, Fonte de Fer. A Durenne, Maitre de Forges: Edition de 1877 (Serie F), illustrated catalogue (Paris, 1877)

Fonte de Fer. A Durenne, Maitre de Forges: Edition de 1889 (Serie R), illustrated catalogue (Paris, 1889)

Associated Places