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Charles Cordier (1827-1905)

Vénus africaine 1852

RCIN 41510

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Queen Victoria was one of the first in Britain to own versions of these much-repeated busts, following their appearance at the Great Exhibition in 1851. While Saïd Abdallah began as a portrait of a studio assistant and freed slave, Saïd Enkess, this bust seems always to have been intended as a challenge to Western ideals of beauty.

Purchased by Queen Victoria in September 1852

No. 88