Various institutions of the Principality met on the Rock on Thursday, April 19, in the presence of Prince Albert to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the birth of François-Joseph Bosio, the exceptionally talented Monegasque sculptor and painter.
The commemoration started at 18 rue Comte Félix Gastaldi – formerly called “Carrugiu d’u mita” – where Bosio was born in 1768. Thomas Fouilleron, Director of Archives and Library of the Prince’s Palace, briefly provided a history of the artist before the procession continued to “Piaçeta Bosio”.
Mayor Georges Marsan, accompanied by two students from the Lycée Albert I, warmly welcomed the Sovereign and the representatives of the high Monegasque institutions to pay homage to this immense artist whose notoriety extends far beyond the borders of the Principality.
Mayor Georges Marsan recalled how much of Bosio’s work had been appreciated by the different French monarchs of his time – Napoleon, Kings Louis XVIII, Charles X and Louis Philippe – who all commissioned work from the artist. In Paris in particular, including the statue of Louis XIV on Place des Victoires, his works are today an integral part of the architectural landscape of the French capital.
The Mayor also reminded those present that in 1969 the Principality attached the name of Bosio to its school of art. The School of Visual Arts, which trains young artists of the future every year, is also known as “Pavillon Bosio”.
The younger generation joined in on the tribute to the great artist through an exhibition, “FJB on the Rocks”. Thursday’s commemoration continued with a visit to this exhibition, which consists of twelve photographs, the result of the work of the second-year students of Pavillon Bosio, printed on large format, highlighted along the promenade of the Jardins Saint Martin. In each photograph, the students took to the stage alongside a sculpture by FJ Bosio with the pictorial works of his brother, Jean-François Bosio, himself a painter.
Finally, the procession went to the School of Fine Arts, admiring the sculpture by Bosio, the Nymph, outside the Ministry of State. Another nymph, the Nymph Salmacis, belonging to the collections of the New National Museum of Monaco, was then previewed by all the guests gathered at Pavillon Bosio: this work, specially commissioned to the Austrian artist Oliver Laric to mark the anniversary, will join Villa Paloma.
The visuals made by the students of Pavillon Bosio will remain all summer along the Jardins Saint-Martin, between the Oceanographic Museum and the Cathedral.