Wednesday, 6 February 2013

La De Smeth - Medals


Three Graces ?? or just 3 pretty ladies at an award ceremony ?? Whatever the story, it is a lovely art nouveau design bronze plaque presented to the exhibitors at the 1911 "Expositions de Turin et de Roubaix"


As with these European, but unlike British works, it is prominently signed by the artist. In this case, La De Smeth. This is not an artist that I had previously encountered, so it will be interesting to answer the who and when questions - if possible.


Full name was Louis-Antoine de Smeth (1883-1964) a Belgium born Sculptor/medallist and from the few dated examples found we see that he was working from c1910 until c1920. All examples exhibit art nouveau design influences rather the later art deco with it's stylised simplicity.

 A series from the collection of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.


Despite the fact that his works can be found several major museum collections, none have any more information that his dates. All that seems to live on is his art - perhaps a reader can helps??

 Silver Plaquette struck c1915 to commemorate -
"Belgian Gratitude for United States Aid, 1914-15"

His work can be found collections and galleries across the world, including; Fitzwilliam Museum, Yale University Art Gallery, Los Angeles County Museum of Art and The British Museum,London.

Interesting most of the De Smeth references available relate to another Blegium artist, Hendrick De Smeth (1865-1940). I do wonder whether there is a family relationship ??


To return to the "20thC Medal Artists" index - CLICK HERE
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