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Gabriel Argy-Rousseau Pâte de Verre "Tigres dans L'Herbe" Night Light

A French Art Deco Pate-de-verre Lamp by Gabriel Argy-Rousseau depicts two red tigers stalking their prey in a fan of purple grass. The pate-de-verre rests upon a wrought iron base also incised with tiger-like grooves. The fin de siècle French populace was captivated by exotic and dangerous subjects, such as the perceived savagery of animals and peoples of distant lands. The tigers' posture is evidently influenced by the Persian lion relief panels exhibited at the Louvre since 1909. Two years earlier, in 1926, Rousseau had fashioned a Lion vase with the same source of inspiration, earning widespread acclaim. The Assyriologists Maurice Pézard and Edmond Pottier brought back the panels from the Susa Apadana palace of Darius the Great. Further excavations from 1921-1922 in Kedesh increased French fascination for the Near East. The influence of these discoveries extended far beyond archaeology. In the world of art, the renowned French painter Eugene Delacroix had already recognized the allure of the East. He had masterfully incorporated the image of the tiger into his 1830s salon paintings, which were exhibited at the Ecole des Beaux-arts posthumously in 1885. Delacroix's fascination with the exotic and the enigmatic motifs of the Near East undoubtedly inspired a generation of artists, perpetuating the tiger as a symbol of the exotic Near East. Most notably, the paintings influenced the post-impressionist painter Henri Rousseau in the creation of his jungle paintings.

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Item #: YEL-21238
Artist: Gabriel Argy-Rousseau
Country: France
Circa: 1928
Dimensions: 8.5" height, 6" diameter.
Materials: Pâte de verre, translucent glass, Wrought Iron
Signed: G. Argy-Rousseau and France
Literature: G. Argy-Rousseau Glassware as Art, with a Catalogue Raisonné of the Pâtes de Verre, by Janine Bloch-Dermant, Thames and Hudson, 1990, page 217, plate 28.11.

The Art Deco eventail (fan) motif was a natural progression of the Baroque sunburst motif of Louis XV. The radial pattern was often used in conjunction with depictions of the new skyscrapers of the age, conveying the shining future of the modern age.