Charles Cumberworth

(1811 - 1852)


Charles Cumberworth appears to have been born in the United States to an English father and a French mother. In Paris this proved to be a considerable handicap, for his parentage was not only the cause for rejection as a prize winner of the Prix de Rome in 1836, but also for his being awarded only three minor state commissions. Cumberworth s style is deeply indebted to his teacher, James Pradier, with whom he studied from 1829 until 1836. Sidelined by the Beaux-Arts system, Cumberworth naturally aligned himself with the emerging anti-academic sculptors of Romanticism in the 1830s, such as Feuchere, Dantan, Maindron and Barre. In the absence of official patronage, he was one of the first sculptors to create his models exclusively as statuettes and sell them to editeurs, such as Susse. Appropriately, his models were also reproduced in England in parian ware by Copeland.