Emilien de Nieuwerkerke
(Paris, 1811 - Gattaiola, 1892)

Equestrian monument of William of Orange

Bronze, dark brown patina, signed on the pedestal
38x36,5x18,5 cm

Prince William I of Orange (Dillenburg 1533 - Delft 1584) was a prominent figure in the Dutch War of Independence against Spain (the Eighty Years' War).


The sculpture was commissioned by William II of the Netherlands and created by the French sculptor Alfred Èmilien O'Hara Comte de Nieuwerkerke in 1845. It was initially exhibited in Paris before being transported by sea to The Hague, where it is still located in front of the Noordeinde Palace.


Alfred Èmilien O'Hara, both a sculptor and a high society figure, held prestigious positions in the government, including the Louvre directorship during the Second Empire. He was as well a collector, and some of his treasures became part of Sir Richard Wallace's collection. During his travels in Italy, he met the sculptor Carlo Marochetti, who was working on the equestrian monument dedicated to Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy (completed in 1838), situated in Piazza San Carlo in Turin. The similarities between that equestrian monument and the one presented here are evident.


Reduced bronze versions were created from the monumental casting, and this is one of the surviving examples, bearing the artist's signature on the base.


It is a fine 19th-century casting. Noteworthy are the quality of the armor and the detailed rendering of the horse, which present an extremely realistic and intricate craftsmanship.


While drawing inspiration from Renaissance models of Giambologna and his school, de Nieuwerkerke created a highly impactful and original work, which can be seen even in the reduced bronze version presented here.


€ 3.500,00 / 4.500,00
€ 2.000,00
Starting price
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Palazzo Caetani Lovatelli, tue 19 September 2023
SINGLE SESSION 19/09/2023 Hours 16:00