ÉVARISTE JONCHÈRE (1892-1956)

Lot 36
Got to lot
Estimation :
12000 - 15000 EUR
Result with fees
Result : 58 500EUR
ÉVARISTE JONCHÈRE (1892-1956)

Congaïe couture, 1940

Bronze with green patina, signed and stamped

E. Godard EA III/IV

62 x 21 x 21cm - 24 x 8 5/8 x 8 3/8 in.


Evariste Jonchère showed a proven talent for artistic creation from a very young age, and at the age of 16 he entered the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris. Alongside his professor, Antonin Mercié, official sculptor of the IIIrd Republic, the young man discov - ered the various techniques of sculpture. Determined to obtain the first Grand Prix de Rome he worked hard for it, and after the First World War he joined the workshop of Jean Boucher the sculptor. His perseverance and talent were rewarded in 1925, the year he won the coveted first prize, allowing him to move to the prestigious Villa Medici. During his stay in Rome, Jonchère perfected his technique and demonstrated a unique talent that earned him several awards. The Academy allowed its residents to travel throughout Italy and Greece, and the artist had the benefit to discover and paint the Hellenic country before returning to France. A tireless worker, Jonchère taught sculpture in Le Havre, but also participated in various exhibitions, including the Colonial Exhibition of 1931. 

Thanks to the paintings he made in Greece, he was awarded the Indochina prize in 1932, which allowed him to leave the Metropolis to discover Southeast Asia for two years. This prize, organized by the Colonial Society of French Artists, provided free travel and allowed the winning artists to travel throughout Indochina for the first year and then to teach at the Hanoi School of Fine Arts for the second year, thus contributing to the dissemination of art. During his stay, Jonchère discovered the different cultures of the French protectorate, which he endeavored to represent through different mediums. Upon his return to France, although the artist’s popularity continued to grow and commissions poured in, Jonchère was still dreaming of the Far East. His desire to return to Indochina was realized when Victor Tardieu, the director of the Indochina School of Fine Arts, died suddenly. Jonchère was chosen to succeed him in 1938. His term of office, which lasted until 1944, was marked by the development of applied arts. Convinced of the value of craftsmanship, the director added lacquerware, ceramics, chiseling and cabinetmaking to the three sections of painting, sculpture and architecture already established at the school. By integrating lacquerware as a section in its own right, Jonchère recognized and allowed the development of this ancestral Annamite work. Attached to the development of the arts throughout the country, he also created the Société Coopérative des Artistes Indochinois. This structure allows to finance the raw materials to the artists but especially to sell the works of the members. The Conseil de Maîtrise des Arts Indochinois (Indochinese Arts Council) oversees the quality of productions and eliminates works deemed unsatisfactory. If the work of valorization and development of the applied arts carried out by Jonchère is significant, he did not neglect his own production. 

Congaïe couture made in 1940 testifies to the great mastery of the sculptor. Belonging to the nicknamed «New Orientalists», Jon - chère immortalized the vision of a gentle and enchanting Far East. In contrast to the Orientalists who were fascinated by an osten - tatious and exuberant Orient, these artists celebrate the sober elegance and reserve of the Indochinese. This congaïe, from the Vietnamese con gái meaning young woman, embodies the grace of the young natives. Devoid of artifice, the haughty bearing and the refinement of the model are magnificently transcribed. Her slightly childish face adopts an Olympian restraint. Unshod, time seems suspended between two tasks. Wearing a traditional outfit but also the conical hat in her left hand, Jonchère restores the presence and sincerity of the model. 

My orders
Sale information
Sales conditions
Return to catalogue