Adam, Lambert-Sigisbert

, an eminent French sculptor, was born at Nancy, Feb. 10, 1700. He was the son of Jacob-Sigisbert Adam, also a sculptor of considerable note. At the age of eighteen, he came to Metz; but a desire to extend his reputation made him repair to Paris, where he arrived in 1719. After exercising his profession about four years, he obtained the first prize, and then went to Rome, with a royal pension, where he remained ten years. While here, he was employed by the cardinal de Polignac in restoring the twelve marble statues known as the “family of Lycomedes,” which had been discovered among the ruins of the villa of Marius, about two leagues from Rome, and acquitted himself with great success in a branch of the art which is seldom rewarded or honoured in proportion to its difficulties. He afterwards restored several antique sculptures, of which the king of Prussia had got possession, and which he conveyed to Berlin. When an intention was | formed of erecting that vast monument at Rome known by the name of the “Fountain of Trevi,” he was one of the sixteen sculptors who gave in designs; but, although his was adopted by pope Clement XI I. the jealousy of the Italian artists prevented his executing it. At this time, however, advantageous offers were made by his own country, to which he returned, after being chosen a member of the academies of St. Luke, and of Bologna. His first work, after his return to France, was the groupe of the “Seine et Marne” for the cascade at St. Cloud. He was then employed at Choisi; and, in May 1737, was elected a member of the French academy, and professor. The piece he exhibited on his admission was “Neptune calming the waves,” with a Triton at his feet; and not “Prometheus chained to the rock,” as some biographers have asserted, which was the production of his brother Nicholas. He then executed the groupe of “Neptune and Amphitrite” for the bason at Versailles, on which he was employed five years, and was rewarded, besides the stipulated price, with a pension of 500 livres. One of his best works was the figure of “St. Jerome,” now at St. Roch. His other works are, a groupe of five figures and of five animals, at Versailles, in bronze; the bas-relief of the chapel of St. Elizabeth, in bronze; two groupes in bronze of hunting and fishing at Berlin; “Mars caressed by Love,” at Bellevue; and a statue representing the enthusiasm of poetry. In all these there are undoubted proofs of genius, but proofs likewise of the bad taste in sculpture which prevailed in his time, and induced him, after the example of Bernini and others, to attempt efforts which can only be successful in painting. In 1754, he published “Recueil de Sculptures antiques Græcques et Romanies,” fol. for which he made the designs. Most of these he had purchased from the heirs of cardinal de Polignac. He died of an apoplexy, May 15, 1759. 1


Argenville Vies de fam. Sculpt.—Biographie Universelle.