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Born in Paris in 1796, Théodore Gechter studied at the School of Fine Arts where his teachers were the sculptor François Joseph Bosio and the painter Antoine Jean Gros.  A classmate of Barye, he specialised in sculpture around 1820 and presented his work at the exhibitions from 1824 to 1840. The first public order he received was to make the Charles Martel sculptural group. In 1834, he received a second-class medal thanks to his Bataille d'Aboukir sculptural group. He then helped in designing the Arc de Triomphe, for which he made a low-relief sculpture representing the Bataille d'Austerlitz. He was awarded the Legion of Honor on the 2nd April 1837 for this low relief sculptural group. He is also known for making the two statues of Rhin and Rhône that are found on the North fountain at the place de la Concorde in 1839. The same year, he was asked by royal orders to create a large marble statue of Louis-Philippe dressed like a sacre. Today, this sculpture is kept at the Versailles Palace, and the bronze version is kept at the museum of Decorative Arts in Paris.

Gechter made many little sculptural groups out of bronze, and we can thus say he had a predilection for battles between cavaliers, particularly those that took place during tempestuous movements, such as the Joan of Arc sculptural group. Gechter particularly liked to portray a cavalier conquering and dismounting another. These battles were the reason for studying horses, movements, and the contortions of the romantics. The acme of a battle was also frequently represented by romantic sculptors and especially by Gechter. Gechter seemed to sell few of his statues to publishing houses. From 1841, he appeared in the Trade Directory as both a bronze maker and a smelter specialist in statuary art. He himself thus made and signed the necessary molds out of sand casting for his items. It seems that he alone organised both the casting and the sale of his items by placing them in galleries in Paris, London, Berlin or Dresden. His series of statuettes allowed him to regularly circulate his art. His sculptures that are the size of an object found in interior decoration, are completely typical of the July Monarchy. 

GECHTER, “Combat de Charles Martel et d'Abdérame, roi des Sarrasins” (Battle between Charles Martel and Abdérame, king of Sarrasins), exhibited at the Salon of 1833. Louvre museum, Paris.
Low-relief sculpture of the “Bataille d'Austerlitz” (the battle of Austerltiz), made by Gechter for the Arc de Triomphe, Paris.
“Le Rhin” (the Rhine), sculpture by Gechter found on the North fountain at the Place de la Concorde, Paris.
“La mort du jeune d'Ailly” (the death of young Ailly) by Gechter, 1842. Castle of Pau.