Antique patinated bronze sculpture of Aida by G. Leroux

By Leroux, Gaston (French, 1854-1942)


With beautiful dual-toned patination, this bronze sculpture of the princess Aida exemplifies the Egyptian revival style of the late 19th century.


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Cast after an 1870 model by French sculptor Gaston Leroux (1854-1942) in the late 19th century, this impressive figurative sculpture has an interesting and unusual subject and features superb detailing throughout.

The sculpture depicts a young woman who wears a typical Orientalist dress. She is covered by a striped coat that sits slightly open to expose her bare chest, and her legs peek out delicately beneath. The robe in particular demonstrates the maker’s exceptional carving skill, expertly rendered to illustrate the folds in the fabric. The woman wears a long headdress with an ornamental band of coins and bejewelled pendants that beautifully frame her face. In her hands, she holds a tambourine, which features gilt detailing that wonderfully contrasts the rich brown patination of the figure. The drum of the tambourine also includes a nielloed coat of arms, and royal insignias can be seen on the sides.

The woman is perched atop a statue of an Egyptian pharaoh’s head. This base has been expertly carved to give the impression of a crumbling ancient sculpture that the woman is using as her seat, with intentional erosion to the nose and sides to evoke the stony texture. The use of two different patinations - the brown-toned patination of the female figure and the green-toned patination of the base - is highly unusual and creates a beautiful colour contrast that draws the eye.

The figure depicted is the Ethiopian princess Aida from Verdi’s famous opera of the same name, who while being held captive in Ancient Egypt falls in love with the Pharaoh's General Radames. Both the opera and this sculpture speak to the revival of Egyptian themes in European art at the time, inspired by the copious ethnographic findings in ancient Egypt during the mid-19th century.

The sculpture is stamped ‘Gaston Leroux’ on the underside. Leroux was famed for his Orientalist sculptures of well-known subjects, exhibiting regularly at the Paris Salon. In 1889, for this figure, he received the silver medal at the World Exhibition in Paris.

Leroux’s exceptional statue is a masterclass in sculptural design, combining skilful carving, beautiful colour contrasts, and an innovative subject matter. This magnificent bronze would be a fantastic addition to the appropriate interior space. 


Artist / Maker
By Leroux, Gaston (French, 1854-1942)
Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
Late 19th Century
Late 19th Century
Egyptian Revival
Patinated Bronze


75 cm / 29.5 inches
33 cm / 13 inches
35 cm / 13.8 inches


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