Guillaume Dupré (1574 – 1643) was a French sculptor and medallist. There is also a statue depicting Henry IV and located in the Louvre.
His life and his artistic career are little known, and Luc Smolderen, who has dedicated a monograph to him, believes that “the moment he sans doute venu de lui consacrer l’ouvrage que l’importance de son rôle dans l’Histoire de la Médaille française justifierait. “” It is probably time to dedicate the attention justified by his role in the history of the French Medal. ” “that the time has undoubtedly come to devote the work to him that the importance of his role in the History of the French Medal justified. ”
Dupré was born in Sissonne in 1576. He was initially trained by the sculptor Barthélemy Prieur,
and in 1600 he married Prieur’s daughter. n 1604 he had a son Abraham, who himself became a medalist.
Dupré applied his artistic skills into producing medals, in particular for Henry IV of France. In 1603 he was named Sculpteur Ordinaire du Roi, and the following year was promoted to Contrôleur Général des Points été Effigies des Monnaies. Dupré’s success continued, and in 1611 he was awarded the title Premier Sculpteur du Roi.
In 1612 he embarked on a long trip to Italy and, in 1629, he was even named the General Artisan Commissar.
In Italy he collaborated with Adriaen de Vries for the construction of a equestrian statue of Vittorio Amedeo I of Savoy, located in the Royal Palace of Turin.
Around 1629, he was also appointed Commissioner-General of Artillery.
During his career he engraved medals for Henri IV, Louis XIII and the beginning of the reign of Louis XIV. He died in Paris in 1643.
Guillaume Dupré distinguishes himself from the engravers of his time by the importance of the reliefs that he gives to his medals. This would not be explained by his initial training as a sculptor with his father-in-law. He also made his own castings and produced pieces of exceptional quality and finish. The journey he made in Italy also influenced his style, which in a certain sense proclaims the French Baroque.
Louis XIII child, 1610, Cabinet des Médailles, Paris
His works are mostly characterized by a high realism.
Bust of Henri IV, musée Condé, Chantilly, circa 1610.
Bust of Henri IV, replica of the nineteenth century, national museum of the Château de Pau.