Artist Bio

René de Saint-Marceaux was born in Reims, northeast of Paris, the son of a champagne maker and the grandson of the city’s mayor.  He entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris in the early 1860s and studied under the sculptor François Jouffroy. The 1868 Salon committee accepted Saint-Marceaux’s sculpture of The Youth of Dante; he would continue to show at the Salon throughout his career.

Saint-Marceaux exhibited a terracotta bust of a child at the Salon of 1874 that the portraitist—and teacher of John Singer Sargent— Carolus-Duran later purchased for his own collection.  By 1876, Saint-Marceaux had rented a studio at 68, rue d’Assas, in Paris, close to the Luxembourg Gardens.

In 1892, Saint-Marceaux married Marguerite Jourdain, the affluent widow of the artist Eugène Baugnies.  Marguerite de Saint-Marceaux kept a busy social calendar. Her parties brought wealthy Parisian society members together with artists and musicians.  Saint-Marceaux and the Haggins were a part of the same community of artists, their friends and critics, and their collectors.

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