An Art Nouveau bust of a young woman
Veil in the hair, breasts exposed and head thrown back
Last quarter 19th century
Bronze with golden brown patina
Signed 'Manuela' artist pseudonym of Anne de Rochechouart de Mortemart Duchesse d'Uzès (1847-1933), after her husband name Emmanuel de Crussol
Foundry round stamp of Thiébault Frères Paris
42 cm (16" 1/2)
The Duchess of Uzès, heiress to the Veuve Cliquot fortune, was quite a character, she was known for her involvement in feminist causes, furthering social welfare, politics, hunting, automobiles and was an accomplished author and sculptor.
She was the first woman in France to obtain a driving licence (1889) and also the first woman fined for speeding, 12km in the Bois de Boulogne !