François POMPON (1855 - 1933)
Wild Duck Taking Flight, 1932

Inscribed under the base : “30” (studio inventory number)
H. 16.5; W. 9; D. 10.7 cm


-A.-H. Martinie, La sculpture, collection L’art français depuis vingt ans, les éditions Rieder, 1928.
-Catherine Chevillot, Liliane Colas, Laure de Margerie, Anne Pingeot, François Pompon 1855-1933, Gallimard / Electa, Réunion des musées nationaux, 1994, pl. 9 p.49 et p. 182, n°10, repr.


The work of one of the greatest animal sculptors of the 20th century, this plaster of Wild Duck Taking Flight, like a number of Pompon’s models, was never cast in bronze. There are only two other plasters of Wild Duck Taking Off; both are held in public collections, one in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris (inv. RF 3806), and the other in the fine arts museum in Dijon (inv. 3784 bis (154). Pompon fully mastered composition in this sculpture, which he made toward the end of his life, at the age of 78. With his Wild Boar of 1925-29 and Running Rabbit of 1929, he introduced a rectangular form that runs counterpoint to the leaping movement of the animal. In this case, a diamond stands on one of its corners to underscore the architecture of the bird’s body as it takes off.