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Inauguration by H.S.H. the Prince of the Bosio exhibition in the Palace of Monaco

On Thursday 14 June 2018, H.S.H. Prince Albert II inaugurated an exhibition in the Palace of Monaco dedicated to François-Joseph Bosio, Monegasque sculptor, 250th anniversary of his birth.

The Palace State Apartments will host this exceptional exhibition on Monegasque artist François-Joseph Bosio until 14 October 2018.

François-Joseph Bosio was born on the Rock on 19 March 1768 into a family living in Monaco since the 17th century. Noticed at the early age of 16 by Prince Honoré III (1720-1795) for his skill in modelling clay, he was sent to Paris where he spent two years in the sculptor Augustin Pajou’s studio.

His career acquired a new dimension in 1807 when he made bas-reliefs for the monumental column on Place Vendôme. Introduced at Court, he renewed the genre of official portraits, between 1810 and 1814, when he made many busts of the Imperial family and dignitaries. Bosio is also recognised as one of the finest representatives of Neoclassical sculpture. He drew his inspiration from Ancient mythology and allegorical subjects, taken for the most part from Ovid’s Metamorphoses in a style seeking to imitate Ancient sculpture until the end of his career. He adapted to changing political regimes and was honoured under the Restoration and July Monarchy, finding favour with Kings Louis XVIII, Charles X and Louis-Philippe.

Some of his official commissions for the Parisian urban scene evoke the history of French royalty. For instance, the equestrian statue of Louis XIV for Place des Victoires inaugurated in 1822, earned him the position of Premier Sculpteur du Roi, a distinction that had been granted to no one, since Bernini in the reign of Louis XIV. Bosio died on 29 July 1845.
The year 2018 is the 250th anniversary of the birth of this world-famous artist, honoured last 19 April in a commemoration on the Rock of Monaco. On this occasion, HSH Prince Albert II stopped in front of the sculptor’s birthplace before leaving flowers at the foot of a bust of the artist on Placette Bosio. He then visited the Saint Martin Gardens, where an exhibition FJB on the Rock presented the results of a research project on Bosio by second-year students of the École Supérieure d’Arts Plastiques – Pavillon Bosio.

The exhibition, François-Joseph Bosio, Monegasque sculptor, 250th anniversary of his birth, held in the State Apartments of the Palace includes some of the artist’s most emblematic works from the collections of the NMNM (New National Museum de Monaco), along with documents from the Archives on his Monegasque origins.

The exhibition is structured around four themes: "Bosio, the Monegasque", "Imagery of the First French Empire", "Neoclassicism and Mythology" and "Herald of the Restoration". It was designed by the Palace Archives, in collaboration with the NMNM (New National Museum de Monaco) with support from Stéphanie Deschamps-Tan, Curator at the Louvre in charge of 19th-century sculpture, and a specialist of Bosio.

Inauguration by H.S.H. the Prince of the Bosio exhibition in the Palace of Monaco