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FRANÇOIS POMPON

Bernardaud & APE release Pompon’s Head of an Orangutan in porcelain. A technical feat to benefit the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)


In 1931, François Pompon unveiled the Head of an Orangutan, a work in black marble depicting the animal with disconcerting realism. Ninety years later, Art for Preventable Extinction (APE), a non-profit organization that acquired one of the three models of the work, presents a limited edition of 499 porcelain pieces made by Bernardaud in its Limoges workshops. A portion of the sales profits will be donated to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the leading global organization dedicated to protecting the environment.


A work full of humanity

François Pompon is an animal artist who is passionate about his subjects, considered the leader of French animal sculptors. In 1930, he made the first plaster model of the Head of an Orangutan. As impressive as it is captivating, his work still echoes today by raising contemporary questions such as the relationship between the man and the animal. Pompon, by choosing to work with a primate, the only time he did so, offers a face to face charged with meaning.


“In the Jardin des Plantes in Paris, where François Pompon went every day, he drew on the spot and made clay models, then, once back in his studio, he worked up further drafts. He also reworked the surface of his plasters to get the light to flow over them, trying to convey the sensation of life through his sculptures.”
Galerie Malaquais, owner of one of the original plasters