Sculptor of the Month: Maillol

Sculptor of the Month: Maillol


Aristide Maillol (1861-1944) was a celebrated French sculptor who began his career in painting and tapestry, taking up sculpture at the age of 40.

He became very successful during his lifetime for his large scale bronzes of classical female figures with rounded, full forms. 18 are displayed in the Tuileries Gardens, and a collection is in the Maillol Museum in Paris.

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Historical Timeline:

1882: Maillol moves to Paris at the age of 21 to enroll at the Beaux-Arts Academy and realize his dream of becoming a painter

1893: He becomes interested in the art of tapestry, and opens his own tapestry fabrication workshop in the south of France.

1900: Maillol becomes so interested in sculpture that he devotes himself completely to it, beginning by creating many works in terracotta.

1905: He has his first great success with the exhibition of his large sculpture le Méditerranée at the Paris Salon, which was modeled after his wife. He receives new commissions.

1913: First international exhibitions in Netherlands, USA and Germany.

1934: Maillol meets Dina Vierny at the age of 15. She becomes his model and collaborator until his death.

1939: Return to Banyuls in the south of France, where he continues to draw and paint and begin an archive of his works.

1944: The year of Maillol’s death, as a result of an automobile accident.

1955: Dina Vierny begins to buy the buildings, one-by-one, of 61 rue de Grenelle in the 7th arrondissement of Paris for a future museum.

1995: Grand Opening of the Maillol Museum, by the Dina Vierny Foundation.