Eugène Cornu (? -1875)
Polychrome bronze and onyx from Algeria
H. 94.5 - D. 46 cm
Spectacular ceremonial pedestal table in bronze with brown, gilded, silver and galvanized patina decorated with a lion's head, acanthus leaf, shell, pine cone, rosette, and ivy. The circular Algerian onyx top covered with ivy and surrounded by a frieze with double patina, rests on a tripod base with claw foot and a spacer surmounted by an onyx top decorated with pearls and a bronze flame.
Eugène Cornu is a French sculptor and bronzier, whose date of birth is unknown, who died in 1875. He first worked as a designer and then took charge of the works of Maison Tahan. In 1858, he became the creator and director of the Compagnie des Marbres et Onyx d'Algérie of A.Pallu & Co. Then Gustave Viot became the owner of these mines and Eugène Cornu continued to collaborate within the Company. They will develop luxurious articles mixing onyx, bronze and champlevé enamels, until it bears its name: "Société des Onyx d'Algérie E. Cornu et Cie". The company will also produce works based on models by Albert Carrier-Belleuse, Charles Cordier and Louis-Alfred Barrias. After his death in 1875, the company will be taken over by H. Journet, and the onyx mines in the Oran region will continue to be exploited until the beginning of the 20th century.
Eugène Cornu will participate in numerous Universal Exhibitions, those of 1862, 1871, 1872 in London and that of 1867 in Paris. During the latter, he will be honored with a gold medal for an impressive pair of vases in onyx, bronze and enamel (signed G. Viot et Cie, Exhibition of 1867, Eugène Cornu Inventeur).
Eugène Cornu (?-1875), guéridon d'apparat en bronze polychrome et onyx, XIXe