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In France the professional standards regarding the production of bronze works of art are set down in the CODE DEONTOLOGIQUE DES FONDERIES D'ART. (Available from fondeursdefrance.org as a PDF document [259 KB])

This document was agreed by, and signed (in Paris, on November 18th, 1993) by the presidents of, the Syndicat Général des Fondeurs de France, the Syndicat des Sculpteurs, the Chambre Nationale des Commissaires Priseurs and the Comité des Galeries d'Art.

The artist must decide before the first piece is cast whether the casting(s) are to be:

  • ORIGINAL
  • MULTIPLE
  • UNIQUE
This decision cannot later be changed.

The most usual course is to produce a series of ORIGINALs. This must not exceed twelve in number (even if cast in differing colours/materials). The twelve to be labelled "1/8" to "2/8" and "EA I/IV" to "EA IV/IV". Obviously if a smaller edition is decided the second number ("/8" or whatever) will vary. Again though, once decided this cannot be changed.

EA means 'artist's proof' (Epreuve d'Artiste).

A MULIPLE edition can be in any number. Again though this must be decided at the outset and the individual pieces numbered "1/300", "2/300", etc. Artists' proofs are not allowed.

A PIECE UNIQUE is just that, labelled "PU" (with details such as "cire directe" if relevant). Obviously there can be no artist's proof of a unique piece.

 

In summary, the normal case is for an edition of (upto) EIGHT pieces, with upto a further four artist's proofs.
For internal trade the rules on Value Added Tax (TVA) also allow (at least at the time of writing) for a lower rate on such editions as against multiple series.

 

Whilst special cases may occur, KITZLEN's bronze works are typically ORIGINALs.

 

The above is a brief summary of the original French document of some pages. Readers should, where necessary, obviously, refer to the original text.


The same code also gives a definition of bronze d'art taken from la Loi du 8 mars 1935 (J.O. du 10 mars 1935). A metal alloy in which the proportion of copper in the manufactured object is not less than 65% w/w. (See paragraph 6.3 of the Code or the original Loi for more details.)


The foundry marks on a bronze work of art.   Detail of the markings on a bronze work of art.
  • The year of casting, given as a four figure number.
    In this case "2004", though this is perhaps the most difficult to read as the numbers curve with the bronze -the terminal '4' is most visible.
    Required by the Code.
  • The technique CIRE PERDUE (lost wax).
    Optional
  • The material/alloy. Here BRONZE
    Optional
  • The mark (or signature) of the foundry (caster).
    Here the semi-circular text of the foundry's name. Here TOURRETTAN.
    Required by the Code.
  • The sculptor's signature. Here the single rune.
    (This may be followed by the date the work was created.)
    Required by the Code.
  • The number of the edition. Here "1/8".
    Required by the Code.


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